Archive for the ‘Urban Planning and Design’ Category

February 26 2014

Madison Follows Florence’s Lead: A Proposal to Increase Downtown Density

February 26th, 2014Posted by 

Density has long been an important feature of thriving cities. High density neighborhoods favor pedestrian walkability over the use of automobiles and provide more efficient use of infrastructure. Madison, Wisconsin is currently debating how to increase its downtown density, while still abiding by the city’s building height rule. No building in the downtown vicinity can […]

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February 26 2014

Consortium of Developers Wins Urban Boundary Dispute in Waterloo, Ontario

February 26th, 2014Posted by 

The Region of Waterloo, a regional municipality located in Southern Ontario, created an Official Plan that sets growth and density targets over the next twenty years. With the goal of intensification, the region limited urban boundary expansions to only seventy to eighty-five hectares from 2011 to 2031. In response, a consortium of developers took the […]

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February 25 2014

Decentralizing Population Growth in Victoria: The Melbourne 2030 Plan

February 25th, 2014Posted by 

Like any thriving city in the western world, population growth and congestion is a major issue facing urban planners in Melbourne. Cities such as Melbourne have started to use generic plans to solve these issues. Furthermore, the city has a legacy to protect; in the past few years it was hailed as the most liveable city in the world. That […]

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February 25 2014

Street Furniture in Bogotá: Changing the City from the Bus Stops

February 25th, 2014Posted by 

‘Street furniture’ or mobiliario urbano as we call it in Colombia, comprises all the objects that form the landscape of a city and are installed in the public space: Benches, railings, lamp-posts, fences and bus stops – in general, elements created with the common purpose of serving citizens. In that spirit, modern street furniture isn’t conceived, designed, […]

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February 24 2014

Opportunities of Urban Sprawl: Mlolongo Township, Kenya

February 24th, 2014Posted by 

Most African cities are characterized by an ever-rising urban population growth and the city of Nairobi is no exception. Various factors such as the natural rise in population, expansion of boundaries, and rural to urban migration have put Nairobi on the map as one of the cities with the highest urbanization rate. Kenya’s population in […]

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February 24 2014

Coming Soon to Montreal, Quebec, Canada: Easy-to-Read Street Names

February 24th, 2014Posted by 

Have you ever noticed how hard it is to read street names in Montreal? The white signs bearing street names are sometimes hidden. They are so small that while driving it is necessary to come to a near stop at street corners to make out what they say. The city of Montreal recognizes the problem […]

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February 20 2014

Funding a Revolution: The Rise of Fabricated Housing in Kansas City, Missouri

February 20th, 2014Posted by 

Due to higher efficiency and better performances of factory production and assembly lines, manufactured homes are increasingly becoming more popular due to affordability in urban design and housing contexts. Local organizations such as the Legal Aid of Western Missouri, are exploring the option of building manufactured homes on lots in the area as part of their Economic Development […]

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February 18 2014

In Arizona, Smart Growth Means the Need for Smart Transportation

February 18th, 2014Posted by 

Since the 1960’s, Arizona has led the country in growth, remaining one of the top three states with the highest population and employment growth rates. However, when the housing market crashed in 2007, growth slowed tremendously, giving the state an opportunity to reflect on how it handled the last fifty years. As of 2011, 129,780 […]

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February 17 2014

$1.6 Billion in Esthetic Value Lost in Toronto Ice Storm

February 17th, 2014Posted by 

With parks, ravines, rivers, and other open spaces, the Parks, Recreation and Forestry division of Toronto likes to call Toronto a “City Within a Park.” However, to make sure this remains true for many years to come, Toronto needs to start recognizing the value of its trees, both when they are standing and when they […]

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February 11 2014

Urban Tunnels in Colombia: Cali’s “Big Dig”

February 11th, 2014Posted by 

Recently, Cali’s mayor Rodrigo Guerrero inaugurated the longest urban tunnel in Colombia, whose main goal is to solve traffic jams in a vast zone of its city center. The Avenida Colombia tunnel is just the beginning of a long-overdue transformation that this Colombian city needed. Like the Bostonian “Big Dig,” it was a project full […]

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February 10 2014

Why Dallas, Texas is the USA’s Worst City for Cycling

February 10th, 2014Posted by 

In 2012, Bicycling Magazine named Dallas, Texas the worst city for cycling for the second time. The lowest percentage of cyclists in the country and the lack of a single bike lane played a major role in the decision, but the title was given in great part because of the city’s failure to follow up […]

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February 05 2014

Contesting the Renovation of the Historic Poste Centrale in Paris, France

February 5th, 2014Posted by 

Even though the Poste Centrale of Louvre Street is not found within the area usually covered by the “Vivre Le Marais!” blog, the restoration of the largest distribution center for mail in France is important. The project, entrusted to the architect Dominique Perrault in 2012, is rather illustrative of the difficulties that arise between contracting authorities (the Groupe La […]

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February 03 2014

Building Community through Design: Toronto Design Offsite Festival

February 3rd, 2014Posted by 

Toronto has long been home to many Canadian designers, architects, and artists, but the Toronto Design Offsite Festival (TO DO) has helped put them on center stage and fostered a public understanding and appreciation for great design. TO DO is an annual week-long independent design festival with a unique arrangement of exhibitions. Unlike the Interior Design Show, which is held […]

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January 31 2014

Outdoor Advertising: A Right or Privilege in Nairobi?

January 31st, 2014Posted by 

The Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) is one of the most iconic buildings in Nairobi and literally defines the capital city’s skyline. Completed in 1973, it is a stunning 105-meter mega structure of twenty-eight floors. It has a helipad on its roof and a revolving restaurant on the top floor. Its unique shape and towering […]

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January 30 2014

Seattle on Track for New Transit Options

January 30th, 2014Posted by 

Seattle consistently ranks in the top ten worst cities for traffic. Mitigating this issue is a top priority, and plans are underway. Plans for light rail extensions are ambitious, but that is what is needed to make it effective. Within fifteen years, greater Seattle’s transportation profile will be completely redefined, having far-reaching implications for the future […]

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January 29 2014

Demolition? Approaching Demolition in Bordeaux, Aquitaine, France

January 29th, 2014Posted by 

Demolition, as anyone will agree, is never an end in itself. Resorting to this rather violent measure requires at the very least a serious assessment, a plan, and a method. The diagnostic itself must investigate several domains. The urban dimension should be assessed through analyzing the features in play on-site and in the surroundings, and […]

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January 27 2014

Book Review: ‘Urbanism in the Age of Climate Change’

January 27th, 2014Posted by 

Urbanism in the Age of Climate Change is an extended summary of Peter Calthorpe’s thought leadership in the areas of urban planning and its impacts on the surrounding environment. Arguing the holistic nature of planning decisions, Urbanism is full of quotable lines and beautiful graphics demonstrating how our carbon footprint continues to grow despite advances […]

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January 22 2014

Bike Paths and the City of the Future, from London to Montreal

January 22nd, 2014Posted by 

I am a fan of the graphic novel series Les Cités obscures by Schuiten and Peeters, which depicts life in autonomous, futuristic city-states that are, above all, very strange. But, there is a bit of this fantastic world in the new project by the well-known British architect Norman Foster, who has proposed the creation of […]

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January 20 2014

Toronto’s Planning Outpaces its Policy

January 20th, 2014Posted by 

In Scarborough, Toronto’s east end, a three-bedroom house will cost almost the same to buy as a two-bedroom condominium apartment. It isn’t difficult to guess which most home buyers might choose. Toronto’s Official Plan is to increase density in the city through mid-rise construction along designated avenues – arterial roads that could accommodate and become […]

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January 20 2014

Community Participation in Sustainable Development in Nantes, Pays de Loire, France

January 20th, 2014Posted by 

Take a bit of sustainable transportation, a dash of accessible pedestrian walkways, green energy, developed waste management, not to mention eco-neighborhoods managed by participatory policies, and you will have a sustainable city. Too simple? Of course, a perfect recipe does not exist, all the more considering that the field is constantly changing. Cities are therefore […]

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