October 17 2013

Social Equity Or NIMBYism? Marin County’s Battle With Affordable Housing

October 17th, 2013Posted by 

Marin County is home to thousands of acres of open space; national, state and regional parks; and one of the most staggering equity disparities in the country. According to the American Human Development Project, the median income for the wealthiest community in Marin County, Tiburon, is $80,000; the lowest is Canal at $21,000. The Canal […]

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October 16 2013

Draining the Earth: Natural Gas Drilling an Issue for Pittsburgh

October 16th, 2013Posted by 

Currently one of the largest environmental issues in the United States is the debate on drilling for Natural Gas. This debate has hit close to home as well, as the city of Pittsburgh and the surrounding area sits along one of the largest natural gas filled rock formations in the country, the Marcellus Shale. By […]

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October 03 2013

Guerilla Planning Strikes Junior College Neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California

October 3rd, 2013Posted by 

The Junior College neighborhood is one of the oldest areas of Santa Rosa, and one of the most walkable. The location of middle schools, high schools, and the junior college within the neighborhood has led to a high level of pedestrian traffic and social interaction between residents. Additionally, the traditional neighborhood layout and house design […]

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October 01 2013

Velocity Targets Four Core Groups in Indianapolis’ Comprehensive Plan Process

October 1st, 2013Posted by 

The term velocity is defined as the “rate of occurrence or action.” In Indianapolis, Indiana, ‘Velocity’ has taken on a new meaning. It’s a community visioning initiative that was co-created by some of Indianapolis’ greatest organizations and individuals. The project is spearheaded by Indianapolis Downtown, Inc., a marketing and communications non-profit that focuses on the development […]

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October 01 2013

Morocco’s New Cities Program Lacks Basic Service Accessibility

October 1st, 2013Posted by 

In 2004, development work was launched in the first site, Tamansourt, nearby Marrakech, of Morocco’s “Villes Nouvelles” (New Cities) program. By 2020, the program aims to create 15 cities evolving around the major country’s urban centers to host a total of 1,150,000 residents. With an investment of over $12 billion, this program had opened 5,000 […]

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September 18 2013

The Rebirth of Pittsburgh’s Strip District

September 18th, 2013Posted by 

While many of Pittsburgh’s neighborhoods have seen major renovations in the last fifty years, none have gone through such an extreme change as the Strip District. Getting its name from its location, being a small, half-square mile strip of land along the banks of the Allegheny River just north of the city’s downtown corridor, the […]

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September 04 2013

Pittsburgh Park Conservancy Preserving 1,700+ Acres of Pittsburgh’s Green Spaces

September 4th, 2013Posted by 

Although heralded as a major urban city, Pittsburgh is also known for its large urban parks and green spaces. These spaces have helped brighten the steel city into a scenic and beautiful metropolis which is begging to be explored by tourists and residents alike. The city itself has five large urban parks, as well as […]

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August 22 2013

Unique Form-Based Code Sets Petaluma Above the Rest

August 22nd, 2013Posted by 

Take a stroll through downtown Petaluma, and you will see why it is different from every other city in Sonoma County. It does not sprawl out like a spider web of big-box retailers and suburban developments like Rohnert Park, nor does its downtown emanate from a central plaza like Healdsburg and Sonoma. Instead, Petaluma’s urban core remains […]

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August 01 2013

Taking the Prairie to the Suburbs: Introducing Sustainable Urban Landscapes

August 1st, 2013Posted by 

When one imagines a Nebraska landscape, it is assumed that most of the land consists of large amounts of flat plains and prairie. This familiar landscape is also finding its way into Nebraska’s urban landscapes; bringing the prairie to the suburbs. Plants commonly associated with prairie landscapes have adapted to Nebraska’s often unpredictable weather patterns, which […]

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July 24 2013

The Almono Site: From Brownfield to Bright Future

July 24th, 2013Posted by 

On the outskirts of Pittsburgh’s city limits sits an old, abandoned steel mill. Rusting away and taking up space on a majestic hillside along the banks of the Monongahela River, the former J&L Steel site is 178 acres of prime real estate, just minutes from Pittsburgh’s downtown corridor. The site was abandoned by J&L Steel […]

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July 18 2013

The Peculiarity of Aldermanic Privilege

July 18th, 2013Posted by 

Urban planners and developers everywhere often need to contend with onerous local zoning codes and wind their way through arduous public approval processes. It’s simply part of the art of placemaking. Yet nowhere is this process as politically peculiar as in the city of Chicago. The city is divided into 50 political wards, each of […]

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July 05 2013

The Big Sort: Essential Reading for Aspiring Urbanists

July 5th, 2013Posted by 

Sharing with contemporary masterpieces such as Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone or David’s Brook’s 2004 publication of On Paradise Drive, The Big Sort – written by Bill Bishop in 2009 – delivers a critical examination of the nature of contemporary American political culture. The idea for the book originated in 2002 when Bishop became interested in researching why certain […]

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July 04 2013

Chicago’s Polluted and Under-used Waterways

July 4th, 2013Posted by 

The South Branch of the Chicago River Chicago’s relationship with its river is a conflicted one. Chicago was only chosen as a settlement site due to the possibility of joining two major watersheds, that of the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River to the Mississippi River. The waterway that made the city possible took […]

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July 03 2013

Shanghai’s Yongkang Lu: Gentrification and Tension

July 3rd, 2013Posted by 

Strolling down a quaint street on a bright, spring afternoon, passing an international array of bakeries, small bars and cafes, you might think you had been transported to a quiet Parisian street. Instead, Yongkang Lu, located in Shanghai, is a street that seems to have changed overnight from a typical Shanghainese street into a European […]

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July 01 2013

Where Urban Planners Go: The Top 10 Urban Planning Websites for 2013 – And Coverage of the Top 20

July 1st, 2013Posted by 

Last year, The Grid went on a mission to uncover the most popular urban planning-related websites for 2012. With extensive research and the help of Alexa International Rankings, we were able to compile a list of the top 20 websites for this specific niche. It is time for an update. In the list for 2013 […]

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June 21 2013

Detroit Healthy City: Health Impact Assessments and the Detroit Future City Plan

June 21st, 2013Posted by 

At the intersection of public health and urban planning, you can find the trend shaping policy across the United States: health impact assessment (HIA). Health impact assessments seek to manage both the effects of and the distribution of the effects on health from specific planning policies or practices. This is achieved by combining many procedures […]

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June 20 2013

Chicago’s South Works Redevelopment Project

June 20th, 2013Posted by 

Renowned Chicago urban planner Daniel Burnham once famously said, “Make no small plans.” The ambitious redevelopment of a former U.S. Steel Mill on Chicago’s South Side is no exception. In what has become a familiar narrative for former industrial sites, the 600-acre South Works is planned to be a mixed-use development the size of the […]

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June 18 2013

Learning from Tourism-Based Transit: An Orlando, Florida, Case Study

June 18th, 2013Posted by 

Orlando, Florida, is consistently the most-visited city in the United States with 48 million annual tourists. It should come as no surprise, then, that a major portion of the local economy is made up of service, hospitality, and theme-park-related jobs relying on national and international visitors. Despite the industry’s importance to the area, local infrastructure […]

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June 14 2013

Nightlife in Neglected Areas: A Recipe for Successful Upgrades in Thessaloniki, Greece

June 14th, 2013Posted by 

As the years pass, there are certain areas in every city that tend to be neglected. But what happens when the nightlife industry intrudes in those areas and changes their whole vibe? This is exactly the case for Valaoritou and Sigrou Streets in Thessaloniki, Greece. The area around these streets were the city’s old shopping […]

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June 14 2013

These Boots are Made for Walking, and so is This City: 4 Benefits of a Walkable City

June 14th, 2013Posted by 

“Walkers are ‘practitioners of the city,’ for the city is made to be walked. A city is a language, a repository of possibilities, and walking is the act of speaking that language, of selecting from those possibilities. Just as language limits what can be said, architecture limits where one can walk, but the walker invents […]

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