Lisa Selin Davis

Lisa Selin Davis's articles on architecture, real estate, and the environment, among other topics, have appeared in The New York Times, Salon.com, OnEarth, and many other publications. She's the author of the novel Belly and lives in Brooklyn, NY

Meet me at the food court

The secret mall gardens of Cleveland

Photo: Gardens Under GlassThe shopping mall is not dead. In Cleveland, in fact, it’s growing green: cucumbers, lettuce, herbs and even flowers.   In the former Galleria at Erieview mall, a project called Gardens Under Glass …

Pimp my double wide

McMansion modular

Remember when modular homes were going to be part  of the “green” future?  In the post-Dwell, post-postmodern architecture era, pre-fab was going to be cheap, green, hot and hip.  Yes, finally, an antidote to McMansions …

car culture

Nothing will drive the suburbs away

Photo: FrankMaurer FlickrThe news that GM will cease production of Hummers revived the brewing argument that suburbia is in fatal decline.  Hummers are the perfect corollary to McMansions, symbols of excess, leftovers from the roaring …

Paved paradise?

Asphalt becomes a developer’s best friend

Photo: jgrimm FlickrNobody loves a parking lot, its endless heat-trapping concrete where visitors wander for what feels like eons, searching for their car. At least, nobody loved them until recently. Suddenly, greyfields–underutilized squares of asphalt–seem …

Radiant Cities: Drive Through This

Can we really make the drive-thru a source of power?

My father believes that the one modern invention above all others to contribute to the downfall of the planet, not to mention our civilization, is the drive-through — or, in the spirit of efficiency on …

Radiant Cities: LEEDwashing

Are developers making mis-LEED-ing claims?

It seems more and more buildings boast LEED credentials these days -- but are they legit? Find out where and why the best known green-building certification term in the land is being excessively bandied about.

Radiant Cities: Driving It Home

One man’s plan to re-create suburbia, sans cars

California’s East Bay — the collection of towns, cities, and suburbs across the Bay Bridge from San Francisco — has a lot to boast about. There’s the perpetually great weather, enlightened inhabitants, and a halfway …

Radiant Cities: Post-Fab

Recession redirects a green-building pioneer

Back around 2006, when the American Dream of home ownership was still intact and green building was officially transferred from the domain of hippies to yuppies, folks got very excited about prefab. Here in New …

Radiant Cities: Levittown, India-style

The folks behind the Nano take their vision to suburbia

On paper, the biggest U.S. export is capital goods–aircrafts, semiconductors, medical equipment, and such. But we’ve been exporting something else in force to developing countries: the suburban lifestyle. From American Village in the Kurdish area …

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