Man With a Plan
Q: As a former mayor of Bogotá, Colombia, who won wide praise for making the city a model of enlightened planning, you have lately been hired by officials intent on building world-class cities, especially in Asia and the developing world. What is the first thing you tell them? In developing-world cities, the majority of people don’t have cars, so I will say, when you construct a good sidewalk, you are constructing democracy. A sidewalk is a symbol of equality.
I wouldn’t think that sidewalks are a top priority in developing countries. The last priority. Because the priority is to make highways and roads. We are designing cities for cars, cars, cars, cars, cars. Not for people. Cars are a very recent invention. The 20th century was a horrible detour in the evolution of the human habitat. We were building much more for cars’ mobility than children’s happiness.
Even in countries where most people can’t afford to own cars? The upper-income people in developing countries never walk. They see the city as a threatening space, and they can go for months without walking one block.
world has never seen before. Chongqing has 12 million people and counting.
It's part of the central government's plan to bring some of China's economic
boom to its impoverished interior province where three out of four Chinese
live. Vanguard takes you on a whirlwind tour of the city---from inside a
cramped boarding house where migrant workers to inside a starter apartment
of China's new class of yuppies; from inside ancient, crumbling teahouses to
gleaming new car factories.
“The Return of the Intercity Bus: The Decline and Recovery of Scheduled Service to
American Cities, 1960 – 2007” assessed the changing status of intercity bus service
throughout the United States during the past half-century. Drawing on data from more
than 5,000 arrivals and departures in a representative sample of American cities, it shows
that U.S. cities lost nearly one-third of their scheduled intercity service between 1960 and
1980 and more than 60 percent of the remaining services between 1980 and 2005.
Upper West Side
At Peak Times, a Hungrier Meter?
By ALEX MINDLIN
PARKING spaces on the Upper West Side are precious resources, to be hoarded like coal in wartime. The familiar street-cleaning shuffle requires paramilitary levels of vigilance and guile. So it is no surprise that the city is eyeing the neighborhood as a place to test a new program that would raise and lower the price of parking to match demand.
The system, known as performance-based pricing, was pioneered by Donald Shoup, a professor of urban planning at University of California, Los Angeles. Under the system, which is in use in Pasadena, Calif. and part of Washington, D.C., the price of parking fluctuates over the course of the day.
In peak periods, like the early evening, prices are kept high enough to dissuade some drivers from parking, with the goal of having two spots per block unoccupied at any time. Advocates of the system say it eases congestion and lowers emissions by sparing drivers the usual "cruise" in search of parking.
Over the last year, officials of the Columbus Avenue Business Improvement District have told the city they are willing to try out the new system, in return for street improvements like bike racks, benches, curb extensions and bike lanes. The city never formally agreed to such an arrangement, but Barbara Adler, executive director of the business district, said she learned a few weeks ago that performance-based pricing might be in the works for the avenue.
Slum Visits: Tourism or Voyeurism?
MICHAEL CRONIN's job as a college admissions officer took him to India two or three times a year, so he had already seen the usual sites - temples, monuments, markets - when one day he happened across a flier advertising "slum tours."
"It just resonated with me immediately," said Mr. Cronin, who was staying at a posh Taj Hotel in Mumbai where, he noted, a bottle of Champagne cost the equivalent of two years' salary for many Indians. "But I didn't know what to expect."
Soon, Mr. Cronin, 41, found himself skirting open sewers and ducking to avoid exposed electrical wires as he toured the sprawling Dharavi slum, home to more than a million. He joined a cricket game and saw the small-scale industry, from embroidery to tannery, that quietly thrives in the slum. "Nothing is considered garbage there," he said. "Everything is used again."
Mr. Cronin was briefly shaken when a man, "obviously drunk," rifled through his pockets, but the two-and-a-half-hour tour changed his image of India. "Everybody in the slum wants to work, and everybody wants to make themselves better," he said.
Slum tourism, or "poorism," as some call it, is catching on. From the favelas of Rio de Janeiro to the townships of Johannesburg to the garbage dumps of Mexico, tourists are forsaking, at least for a while, beaches and museums for crowded, dirty - and in many ways surprising - slums. When a British man named Chris Way founded Reality Tours and Travel in Mumbai two years ago, he could barely muster enough customers for one tour a day. Now, he's running two or three a day and recently expanded to rural areas.
The derived nature of transportation demand implies that enhancement of mobility per se is not a reasonable goal for transportation policy; instead, improved mobility is desired to the extent that it furthers accessibility—a goal that can be achieved through a variety of measures. The paper uses the mobility–accessibility distinction to distinguish different implementations of congestion pricing. A mobility-based congestion pricing promises to alleviate congestion but threatens to deteriorate from overall regional accessibility as it accelerates metropolitan deconcentration. In contrast, accessibility-based congestion pricing avoids acceleration of sprawl by incorporating policies to ensure that drivers tolled off roads are replaced with residents and travelers arriving at previously congested areas by other means.
Through estimation of a discrete choice model of residential location, this study argues that commute time remains a dominant determinant of residential location at the regional scale, and that provision of affordable housing near employment concentrations can influence residential location decisions for low-to-moderate-income, single-worker households. However, the significance of jobs-hunting balance is not in reducing congestion; even when successful, such policies will have little impact on average travel speeds. Rather, the relaxation of suburban regulation that could lead to improved matches between home and workplace is seen as enhancing the range of households' choices about residence and transportation.
Journal The Annals of Regional Science
Issue Volume 41, Number 2 / June, 2007
Mark W. Horner
Abstract Issues of growth, especially the spatial nature of recent urban development and its implications for travel patterns, have received a great deal of attention. In particular, questions persist as to how the spatial distribution of workers and jobs influences commute patterns. This paper investigates changes in commuting and land use patterns using measures of jobs-housing balance, commuting efficiency and other statistics. A smaller urban area is chosen for study (Tallahassee, FL, USA)and data on its workers, jobs, and commute patterns are obtained from the Census Transportation Planning Package for 1990 and 2000. The key research questions investigated probe whether there were substantial changes in urban form and commuting over the period. A two-tiered approach is taken where change is explored at the regional and local scales using GIS, optimization procedures, and inferential statistical techniques. The results reveal the extent of the spatial changes in the study area between 1990 and 2000. Major findings included stability in urban structure over the time period, as well as a persistent strong relationship between land use and commute patterns. These results are discussed in light of their implications for other cities and for future work.
Study: Americans Commute an Average 25 Minutes
Morning Edition, October 12, 2007 · A new study shows the average American commutes an average of 25 minutes. That's almost nine full days a year behind the wheel. Commutes have worsened over the last two decades because highways haven't kept pace with population growth and urban sprawl. If you work in New York City, your average commute is the worst in the country: almost 36 minutes long. For the nation's easiest commutes, you have to turn to the colder climes of Omaha and Buffalo.
Call#: Lippincott Library HE355 .S49 1989
Authors: Martin Wachs a; Brian D. Taylor a; Ned Levine a; Paul Ong a
Affiliation: a Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Published in: Urban Studies, Volume 30, Issue 10 December 1993 , pages 1711 - 1729
Commuting patterns between home and work were studied among 30 000 employees of Kaiser Permanente, a major health care provider in Southern California. The study tracked the differences between home and work location among employees over 6 years by analysing employee records and responses to a survey of over 1500 of the workers. It was found that work trip lengths had in general not grown over the 6 year period. Growth of the work force had contributed more to the growth in local traffic congestion than had a lengthening of the work trip over time. The automobile remains the dominant mode of travel between home and work for these employees, and choices of residential location were found to be based upon many factors in addition to the home-work separation, such as quality of neighbourhood and schools and perceived safety.
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Call#: Van Pelt Library HE359.L293 C64 2004
from University of Michigan -- A. Alfred Taubman College of Architecture + Urban Planning
Urban Planning Summer Reading List
So many people ask what to read that we decided to do a list. This is completely optional, no pressure to read intended
The Politics of Play is a collaborative workshop inviting artists, sociologists, designers, game designers, urban planners... PEOPLE to come together in an expedition. The purpose of this journey is to foster collaborative networks in the city through the medium of play.
The workshop will take the form of an exchange and collective learning experience divided into 3 parts; research, experimentation and implementation.
Play can offer a common ground for people to meet and exchange.
Almost everyone can play a game. The term "playing around" infers impermanence or a format for a deferred stance on an issue which offers up a way to let down ones guard. Often times this provides a sense of freedom that cannot be found in a sanctioned panel discussion, meeting or class room. Far more than humor, there is the play of ideas, the playfulness of free experimentation, the playfulness of free association and the play of paradigm shifting that are as common to scientific experiment as to pranks.
The Politics of Play is a workshop conceived by Amy Franceschini and Myriel Milicevic. The workshop serves as a plaform for research; sociological, urban studies, and game theory. The workshop was premiered at Mal au Pixel in Paris in April 2006.
Ron Shiffman is a professor at the Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment at the Pratt Institute, director emeritus of the Pratt Institute Center for Community and Environmental Development, and from 1990-96 a commissioner on the New York City Planning Commission.