January 13 2014

Trying to Dethrone the Automobile in Bordeaux, Aquitaine, France

January 13th, 2014Posted by 

Ten years after putting the tram network into service and completely reworking the bus system, the results are discouraging. In Grand Bordeaux, two-thirds of transportation is still done in individual automobiles. Here are the reasons for this situation and a few suggestions for improvement. 1. The car has remained king in the urban area Every […]

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January 09 2014

Environmental Protection Policies in China Need Stricter Implementation

January 9th, 2014Posted by 

In the first half of December 2013, a large-scale-smog occurred in eastern China, which affected twenty-five provinces and more than 100 cities. Data from a popular online shopping website shows that in 2013, customers have spent 870 million Yuan on buying masks, air purification machines, and indoor trackmills. The top five cities and provinces that […]

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December 31 2013

Farewell Cars! Buenos Aires’ Highways to Undergo Transformations

December 31st, 2013Posted by 

For many years the symbol of progress for many cities in Latin America were highways, enormous corridors of concrete designed to meet the needs of sprawling metropolitan areas that followed the American model of car dependent communities. These autopistas were designed to promote urban expansion and the real estate speculation that comes along with it, […]

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December 24 2013

Beijing Proposes to Increase Subway Ticket Price

December 24th, 2013Posted by 

Recently, the Beijing municipal government announced that its subway system would charge higher prices during peak hours. This policy will mark the end of a ¥2 (yuan) per day flat rate. 60% of Internet users were against this policy, saying that increasing the subway price would not solve the overcrowding problem during peak hours; instead, […]

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December 20 2013

Farewell to The Grid, from Meg Mulhall

December 20th, 2013Posted by 

My first post for Global Site Plans was published in January. I was eager to write for The Grid, and treated it as an opportunity to explore the urban planning issues and interface with those involved in Ann Arbor and Detroit, Michigan. In that first post I asked, “What are some more balanced revitalization proposals […]

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December 18 2013

The Role of Beauty in Infrastructure: Kazakhstan’s Almaty Metro Inspires

December 18th, 2013Posted by 

I recently rode the Almaty Metro, in Kazakhstan, at present a single-line subway that opened in 2011 after being under construction since the late days of the Soviet Union. Exiting at Almaly station, I was captivated by a stained-glass mural, which led me to contemplate the role of beauty in infrastructure–specifically in American subway station […]

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December 16 2013

Toulouse, Midi-Pyrénées, France, and (Old) New Forms of Transportation

December 16th, 2013Posted by 

The magazine Ville Rail & Transports has recently singled out the Toulouse Metropolitan Area’s programs by awarding them with the “New Forms of Transportation” prize. It is time to express appreciation for everyone involved in these policies. This distinguished project has been based on a great deal of voluntary action. It’s interesting to note that […]

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December 11 2013

Prospects for a Tunnel Beneath the Harbor in Geneva, Switzerland

December 11th, 2013Posted by 

In the beginning, Michèle Künzler, a state councillor formerly employed in the Department of the Interior and Mobility, implied that voting for the “Let’s Save our Parks” initiative could condemn the project for a tunnel under the city’s harbor. I have to say that hearing the representative from the Verts, an ecological political party, utter […]

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December 10 2013

Noord-Zuidlijn in Amsterdam: Digging a Metro Line under the Historic City

December 10th, 2013Posted by 

For the last ten years, visitors of Amsterdam have been surprised at the sight of several open construction sites in the city’s historic center. Starting at Central Station, open construction sites are found throughout the city until the South/WTC railway station. The reality is that those multiple sites are all part of one big project: […]

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December 09 2013

Closure of The Champlain Bridge: Transportation Sustainability in Montreal, Quebec

December 9th, 2013Posted by 

It’s hard to look past the topic of the week: the Champlain Bridge! The closure of several lanes on the bridge deck caused huge traffic jams over several kilometers at the beginning of the week, with the same happening at all road accesses crossing the St. Lawrence River. And that is only the start of […]

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December 05 2013

Beijing Includes Tourism Development in City’s Comprehensive Planning

December 5th, 2013Posted by 

Beijing Municipal Commission of Tourism Development Officer Zhou Zhengyu said during a presentation at the city’s municipal congress conference that Beijing would include tourism development into the city’s comprehensive planning scheme, which includes land use, transportation, and infrastructure planning. Zhou Zhengyu said at the conference that Beijing would place tourism development into the overall urban […]

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December 02 2013

Eco-neighborhood or Nice, New Neighborhood? A View from Quebec City, Canada

December 2nd, 2013Posted by 

I must admit that like others, I really enjoy the photo coverage done by Jean Cazes. He walks all over the neighborhood of Limoilou, camera in hand, and uses photography to tell us about his changing neighborhood, and everyday things that escape our attention. However, it is not Jean who will be the subject of […]

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November 28 2013

Nanjing Proposed to Build Sino-Singapore Eco Hi-Tech Island

November 28th, 2013Posted by 

The Sino-Singapore Nanjing Eco Hi-Tech Island is set to be an island showcasing the future of Nanjing and its aspirations to be a center for the development and practice of high-tech innovation in areas such as IT services, eco-environmental service, the modern service industry and the modern agriculture service industry. The location of the Eco […]

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November 27 2013

Architect Michel Cantal-Dupart Warns of Grand-Paris’ Mediocrity

November 27th, 2013Posted by 

To reduce Grand Paris to metro and train lines is to forget the demands for integration made by neighborhoods, and also solidarity with our less affluent fellow citizens. It ignores the imperative to conduct urban planning, and it is also an assault against residents. All of this is summarized in a twenty page report given […]

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November 26 2013

Beijing Develops Tongzhou New City as its Sub-Center

November 26th, 2013Posted by 

On June 29th, the eleventh Beijing Municipal Party Congress positioned the development of the Tongzhou New City as “the sub-center of Beijing.” Liu Qi, Secretary of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China said in the government report that it’s time to speed up the pace of urbanization, and to further implement […]

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November 26 2013

Phoenix Catches a Ride on the Walking School Bus

November 26th, 2013Posted by 

A Walking School Bus seems a little counter-intuitive at first glance, but it may be one of the most effective ways for cities, like Phoenix, Arizona, to spread awareness about walkable neighborhoods. With a group of kids, a couple of community volunteers, and a safe route to school, communities can reshape the next generation’s view […]

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November 25 2013

Toulouse’s Exhibition Center to Begin Construction in 2015 in Toulouse, Midi-Pyrénées, France

November 25th, 2013Posted by 

The public inquiry into Greater Toulouse’s future exhibition center began November 4th, and will come to a close on December 13th. The Urban Community of Greater Toulouse hopes to obtain a recognition of public interest in 2014 so that work may begin in 2015. An essential step in the plans for the exhibition center, set to open […]

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November 14 2013

State Transportation Grant Bolsters Long-Awaited Sonoma Valley Bike Trail

November 14th, 2013Posted by 

How incredible would it be to explore Sonoma Valley and its hundreds of wineries without spending a dime on gas or expensive tours?  Apparently it would be pretty incredible, judging by a recent state-funded grant to develop the Sonoma Valley Bike Trail, which will connect the regions wineries and parks. The $191,000 Community-Based Transportation Grant […]

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November 12 2013

Hainan Province Establishes “Big Sanya Tourism Circle” to Integrate Regional Tourism Resources

November 12th, 2013Posted by 

Regional economic integration that creates synergy among neighboring cities has become a trendy economic development strategy in China. In Hainan Province’s tourism industry, this concept is turning into realization. On October 26th 2013, a special conference took place in the Sanya Hai Tang Wan Westin Hotel. Sanya, the southernmost city of Hainan Province and China, […]

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November 08 2013

Detroit Center MConnector Shuttles University of Michigan Students to Detroit

November 8th, 2013Posted by 

The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor provides buses for students to more easily traverse the multiple campuses spread across the city. And now the University is making it easier for students to engage with the City of Detroit, situated only forty miles east of Ann Arbor. This fall they launched the MConnector project that […]

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