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Urban Planning

The Time To Save Our NYC Parks Is Now

Mark Ruffalo | Posted 06.04.2015 | New York
Mark Ruffalo

What makes a park a park? Ordinarily, that might be a question for a New York dinner party. Today, it is an urgent legal question before the New York Court of Appeals. As a Villager, I'm naturally concerned that any of our local parks could be wiped out to make way for more construction. Overall, our city is park-starved.

Perspectives on Millennials and the City

Wendell Cox | Posted 06.03.2015 | HuffPost Home
Wendell Cox

Millennials are a larger share of the total population in the downtown or Central Business District (CBD) than elsewhere in the city. In 2011, millennials represented 24.4 percent of the CBD population.

Say It Ain't So! HCDA Says NO to Affordable Rentals

Powell Berger | Posted 06.01.2015 | Hawaii
Powell Berger

When HCDA, the planning oversight organization in charge of the future of Honolulu's urban core, denied the Howard Hughes request to convert a planned building from condos-for-sale to rental units, the HCDA said no.

Transforming Cities for Sustainability: Q&A With Urban Expert Pascal Mittermaier

Mark Tercek | Posted 06.01.2015 | Green
Mark Tercek

Making cities more sustainable isn't just good for nature -- it's good for people, too, of course. That's a concept Pascal Mittermaier, the Nature Conservancy's new Global Managing Director of Cities, believes can transform how leaders incorporate nature into urban planning.

Most Bikeable Cities of 2015

Redfin | Posted 07.01.2015 | Travel

Thanks to investments in infrastructure such as protected bike lanes and networks of bike paths, several cities saw big increases in their Bike Scores since the 2013 ranking. On average, cities that ranked in the top 20 saw an increase of more than two Bike Score points.

Canada's Middle-Income Housing Affordability Crisis

Wendell Cox | Posted 05.12.2015 | World
Wendell Cox

Canada faces a housing affordability crisis. In a number of cities, housing has become so expensive that many middle income households can no longer afford to buy a house. This is not good for people, households or the nation as a whole.

10 Cities That Are Shaping The Future Of Urban Living

The Huffington Post | Nick Robins-Early | Posted 05.11.2015 | World

Cities are frequently at the front line of innovation when it comes to addressing the changing problems of urban life. Plans to combat climate change,...

Two Birds With One Stone: Transforming Waste Into Biofuel

Josephine d'Allant | Posted 05.11.2015 | Impact
Josephine d'Allant

Around the global south, cities struggle to provide electricity and energy to all their residents, and unsurprisingly, the poorest residents are most likely to remain disconnected from formal power systems. Many of the same cities also face an immense garbage challenge: what to do with overwhelming amounts of unsanitary and even toxic waste.

Actors Equity Lowers Curtain on Piece of L.A. Civic Culture

Josh Stephens | Posted 06.25.2015 | Los Angeles
Josh Stephens

By most accounts, urban planners don't need to pay much mind to the policies of stage actors unions. It's the rare city in which theaters have much of an impact on the built environment.

Formally Mapping Informality

Josephine d'Allant | Posted 06.22.2015 | Impact
Josephine d'Allant

One of the most valuable results of mapping informal settlements is highlighting that many self-built houses in the settlements are just as old as the city's first skyscrapers.

The Worst-Designed Cities In The World

Thrillist | Posted 06.22.2015 | Travel

From sky-scraping metropoles to up-and-coming centers breaking the "large town" mold, cities come in all shapes and sizes. But with that diversity comes one simple truth: no city is perfect.

The 9 Worst-Designed Cities in the World

Thrillist | Posted 06.22.2015 | HuffPost Home

By: Gianni Jaccoma Credit: From sky-scraping metropoles to up-and-coming centers breaking the "large town" mold, cities come in al...

Collected Ideas That Bring Hope for a Greener, Healthier World

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 06.20.2015 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

I can't think of a better time to review Jared Green's inspiring new book, Designed for the Future, than the week of Earth Day.

Environmental Education: Deep in the Heart of the City

Ben Klasky | Posted 06.13.2015 | Green
Ben Klasky

If the Environmental Education movement is going to continue to remain relevant, we must evolve with our rapidly changing world. According to the U.S. Census, 80 percent of the U.S. population already lives in urban areas.

Urban Edges and How to Define the Spaces Beyond

Charles R. Wolfe | Posted 06.07.2015 | Arts
Charles R. Wolfe

Today's urbanist may also see a future gondola station, a walkable destination, or the potential for sustaining natural pockets amid the built environment.  But what compels such vision? I'll take a leap of faith here, in order to put a modern gloss on the human imagination that conceived the edge of the earth in Italy, long ago.

How Thoughtful Street Design Is Helping Communities and the Economy

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 05.27.2015 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

In the end, Safer Streets, Stronger Economies is less a scientific study than a compilation of available (and, to a great extent, differing) data from a limited range of case studies. To my mind, it is far from conclusive.

Using Urban Observation to "Ghost-Bust" Cities

Charles R. Wolfe | Posted 05.26.2015 | Arts
Charles R. Wolfe

I saw a ghost, of a missing building from a boyhood memory -- something that Amazon might have retrofitted, today, if it were still there for the taking.

Towards a Sustainable, Inclusive and Resilient Urban Future

Hung Vo | Posted 05.12.2015 | Teen
Hung Vo

Our future continues to be threatened by poverty, climate change and social inequity. At the same time, it is becoming increasingly clear that only through solidarity and cooperation can we begin to solve these dilemmas.

Sustainability Planning in New York City: Let's Build on the Path-Breaking Work of the Bloomberg Team

Steven Cohen | Posted 05.09.2015 | Green
Steven Cohen

New York City is America's largest local government, and it is at the local level that most people actually experience government's performance.

Urban Renaissance or Cities of the One Percent?

Angela Glover Blackwell | Posted 05.04.2015 | San Francisco
Angela Glover Blackwell

More than 80 percent of the U.S. population lives in metropolitan areas and that number is only expected to grow in the coming years. If we don't act now to build inclusive growth at scale in urban economies, we're heading towards an urban downfall, not an urban renaissance.

The Nightmare of Youth Unemployment and How to Fight It

Josephine d'Allant | Posted 05.03.2015 | Impact
Josephine d'Allant

High levels of youth unemployment may be one of cities' worst nightmares: not only does it signal and perpetuate a struggling economy, but high numbers of disengaged youth can lead to immense frustration across an entire generation, increased crime, and even revolt.

Ready for My Close-Up!: Parks in the Movies

Adrian Benepe | Posted 04.14.2015 | Green
Adrian Benepe

With the Academy Awards coming up Feb. 22, people around the world are thinking about their favorite movies, actors, directors and even sound tracks. For some of us in the world of city parks, we watch movies through a narrower lens: scenes shot in parks.

Reading Cities, Cover to Cover, And Why

Charles R. Wolfe | Posted 04.12.2015 | Arts
Charles R. Wolfe

When Charles Montgomery penned The Happy City, he knew that going forward, evolving cities need to honor human emotion. His follow-up labs attempt to measure what humans want and need in urban environments.

Suburbs of Survival, and the Democracy of Placemaking

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 03.30.2015 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

Those of us who style ourselves as "urbanists" -- myself included, much of the time - tend to get a bit snobbish and condescending about, you know, ordinary people.

Bringing Sustainability to Small-Town America

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 03.24.2015 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

There are some terrific examples of green initiatives beginning to emerge in small-town America. While these communities may frequently lack institutional capacity and fiscal resources to undertake big initiatives, they do have the benefit of agility. Even a single leader can make a difference.