April 30 2013

Commercial Onshore Wind Farms: A Threat to the Amenity of the Landscape

April 30th, 2013Posted by 

The amount of wind power in the world is increasing quickly. The background for this development is improved technology, decreased costs for the units, and increased concern regarding environmental problems of competing technologies such as fossil fuels. The amount of wind power is not spread equally over the world, so in some areas, there is […]

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April 29 2013

The First Fairtrade Town in Colorado

April 29th, 2013Posted by 

What does ‘Fairtrade’ mean? Can an entire town really become fair in all senses of trade? The basis of the Fairtrade movement is simple: help alleviate poverty in developing countries by paying premium for the goods we (‘developed’ countries) import. It’s the monitoring the ‘fairness’ within international business that is difficult to police. According to […]

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April 26 2013

Forgotten History: The Cincinnati Social Unit Experiment

April 26th, 2013Posted by 

Brighton – a small, tightly woven community of artists and art galleries, is located Northwest of Over the Rhine and downtown Cincinnati. It retains a ghostly atmosphere – a quiet neighborhood, where age-old nineteenth century Italianate buildings sit dormant against a backdrop of a modern city, now beginning to regain its former prominence. Walking these […]

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April 25 2013

The Road To Recovery: A Lesson In Rebuilding from the Gulf Shores of Alabama

April 25th, 2013Posted by 

As I stepped out of my blogging domain of Lincoln, Nebraska and to Gulf Shores, Alabama for a spring break getaway this past month, I was able to gain great insights into an environment far removed from the Midwest landscapes of Nebraska. I quickly became fascinated in the lasting effects of the BP Oil Spill […]

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April 25 2013

Close But No Cigar: A Review of James S. Russell’s The Agile City

April 25th, 2013Posted by 

In recent years we have begun to feel the effects of climate change the world over. In America, hurricanes like Superstorm Sandy and Katrina brought urban areas to their knees, killing people, destroying communities, and causing untold billions in damage. In this context, urban analyst and historian James S. Russell’s book The Agile City calls […]

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April 24 2013

Dashed Dreams of an Eco-City: The Failure of Dongtan Eco-City on Chongming Island, China

April 24th, 2013Posted by 

What was supposed to have been a perfect model of eco-design has come up rather short as plans for Dongtan, an eco-city on Chongming Island, have since disappeared. Located just 25km from Shanghai, the sustainably designed city was to have been partially completed by 2010, with the majority of the city finished by 2020. Instead, […]

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April 23 2013

Talking Sustainability: An Interview with Orlando, Florida’s Creative Village Developer

April 23rd, 2013Posted by 

Technology, education, and sustainability are the driving forces behind Orlando’s upcoming Creative Village, a 68-acre infill project in downtown Orlando. Craig Ustler, 50 Most Powerful People in Orlando mainstay and co-developer of the site with the City of Orlando, sat down with me to talk about the carefully chosen, innovative urban planning practices he plans to […]

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April 19 2013

Farewell From Bonnie Rodd: Blogging from Austin, TX

April 19th, 2013Posted by 

In the summer of 2012 I was a fresh graduate from the University of Texas at Austin, trying to make my way into the working world. Having been an Urban Studies student minoring in Architecture, I was hopeful I would be able to find work in which I could apply my passion for urban development, […]

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April 17 2013

How Water Trails Benefit Communities Across the United States

April 17th, 2013Posted by 

Water trails are defined by the North American Water Trails, as “a stretch of river, a shoreline, or an ocean that has been mapped out with the intent to create an educational, scenic, and challenging experience for recreational canoers and kayakers.” Here in Lake Tahoe, we have seventy-two miles of scenic shoreline that provides an […]

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April 16 2013

Sustainable Farming in the 21st Century: Anaerobic Digestion in The Netherlands

April 16th, 2013Posted by 

In the neighbourhood “Polderwijk“ of Zeewolde, The Netherlands, more than a thousand homes, schools and a churches are sustainably heated with green heating that is produced with the production of electricity from biogas. The project is a partnership between the municipality, a local energy company (Essent) and a farm (Van Beek) located 5 km from […]

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April 12 2013

League of American Bicyclists: Is the University of Michigan Deserving of Bronze Bike-Friendly Status?

April 12th, 2013Posted by 

I recently explored the bike-friendly status bestowed upon the University of Michigan and its town Ann Arbor by the League of American Bicyclists. A general consensus on their respective bronze and silver-level ratings is that there is room for improvement. An interesting way to look at the bike community in Ann Arbor is to consider […]

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April 11 2013

Debate Continues Over Sustainability of Phoenix, Arizona

April 11th, 2013Posted by 

In a recent op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, William deBuys, author of A Great Aridness, predicted a bleak climate future for Phoenix, Arizona. He explained that a heat island effect has been created by an overly concrete world and our dependence upon water from the Colorado River. But, in a short piece on KJZZ, […]

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April 10 2013

Cycling in the City: A Bike-Friendly Future on the Way for Shanghai, China?

April 10th, 2013Posted by 

With pollution and traffic problems at all-time highs in Chinese cities, some are taking up cycling as a sustainable alternative. The burgeoning environmental movement, convenient urban transportation system, and the costs of car ownership have convinced some out of their cars and onto public transportation and bikes. In the past, bicycle infrastructure was purposely neglected […]

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April 10 2013

A Makeover for a Lively, But Car-Dependent Shopping Center

April 10th, 2013Posted by 

Fayetteville, North Carolina. Fayetteville’s forward-looking, 2030 draft “Growth Vision” imagines the city’s evolution: the sprawling, car-dependent home to Fort Bragg and Pope Air Force Base – characterized by its bedroom communities, “big box” stores, and chain restaurants – will grow into a city of walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods. Is this feasible? Perhaps. The Expansive Cross Creek […]

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April 08 2013

A Short River Story from Athens, Greece

April 8th, 2013Posted by 

Kifisos is a principal watercourse of the Attica basin which springs from mountains of Parnitha and Penteli, run through downtown Athens and eventually discharges into Saronikos Bay. Just before emptying into the sea, for a stretch of 20klm, river Kifisos has been regrettably covered by transportation infrastructure as means to avoid expensive expropriations. At its […]

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April 05 2013

Great Expectations: The Power of Empowering the Impoverished

April 5th, 2013Posted by 

When you think of tough neighbourhoods and burroughs like the Bronx in New York, or St Ann’s in Nottingham, you don’t necessarily equate them with energy efficient living. If you consider it living at all, it is most certainly not energy efficient living. However, it is in Nottingham England that city council has made an […]

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April 05 2013

Transit-Oriented Developments are One Answer to Austin’s Growth Need

April 5th, 2013Posted by 

As Austin, Texas strives to grow as a more environmentally and socially sustainable city, it has turned to Smart Growth principles to obtain its growth goals. One way in which the city has met this challenge is through the implementation of Transit-Oriented Developments, or TODs. The principles are transit-centric and consist of the following: ●     […]

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April 04 2013

What Transportation Says About Lifestyle

April 4th, 2013Posted by 

Each day, millions of people depend on reliable transportation for access at a high level of efficiency; and in this way, cities are the largest people movers around. From a logistical standpoint, the efficiency as well as effectiveness and sustainability of these systems is directly correlated with intelligent planning techniques that are able to react […]

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April 03 2013

Four-Season Growing in an Alpine Climate: The Growing Dome at Truckee Community Farm

April 3rd, 2013Posted by 

“No matter where you are, what your constraints are, you can make it happen.” – Susie Sutphin, Farm Manager at the Truckee Community Farm The Tahoe Food Hub has a vision: to create a “hub for all sustainable food initiatives that promote social, economic and environmental responsibility in our food system.” With help from its community […]

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April 02 2013

Floating Life: Is It Achievable?

April 2nd, 2013Posted by 

The Netherlands is a relatively small country, however it has a considerably sizeable population that is currently in and around 16.5 million. This makes it one of the most densely populated countries in the world, with almost 83% living in urban regions. It is an extremely low lying country with about 50% of its land […]

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