Cities

PACE IN THE HOLE

Fannie and Freddie attack clean-energy plan

Few new ideas brighten the faces of clean-energy advocates as much as Property Assessed Clean Energy, or PACE, the Berkeley-born financing tool that’s spreading quickly throughout the country. The three-year-old model has put rooftop solar …

keeping score

Measuring neighborhood diversity and liveliness with ‘JaneScore’

Perhaps you know about Walk Score, the delightfully intuitive tool that calculates how walkable a neighborhood is and ranks it on a 100-point scale. (My Seattle neighborhood gets an 85; my suburban Chicago hometown gets …

spokes-models

Hottie bikers in Miami Beach, Complete Streets in St. Louis

Ten minutes of biking a day and you too can look like this.Decobike.comSpend enough time watching the Senate dither on the climate threat/energy quest/defining challenge of our time and it’s easy to lose sight of …

Eight-minute abs, also, are good

Portland Mayor Sam Adams wants ’20-minute neighborhoods’

Newish Portland Mayor Sam Adams wants to build more “20-minute neighborhoods” in his fair city. From a Fast Company interview: We’re also working to make every section of Portland a complete 20-minute neighborhood to strengthen …

Rhymes with Sjöstad

Local power: tapping distributed energy in 21st-century cities

Hammarby Sjostad “eco-cycle”Source: HammarbySjostad.de Residents of Hammarby Sjöstad, a district on the south side of Stockholm, Sweden, don’t let their waste go to waste. Every building in the district boasts an array of pneumatic tubes, …

MEGA slow mania

A return to the land, and fresh food, in the backyards of the Delta

January 2011 update: Many of the photos have been removed from this series so they can be published in a Breaking Through Concrete book, forthcoming this year from UC Press. We drive south down Route …

Superfund me

How we poisoned the Passaic

In June 1983, Newark’s close knit Ironbound community was overrun by investigators in Hazmat suits after EPA officials found dioxin at the Diamond Alkali chemical plant site.Photo: wirednewyork.comOn the morning of June 2, 1983, the …

Reading the signs

Why urban businesses have better advertising

It’s no secret that there are lots of chain businesses in sprawling areas and relatively more independent businesses in urban cores. The blog Discover Urbanism has a fascinating explanation of how the built environment determines …

the same oil story

Can we just drive less after the Gulf spill? If only it were so easy …

Photo: Stephan Geyer via FlickrNPR reporter Brian Mann went talking to gas-station customers in upstate New York to find out what they’re thinking about the Gulf of Mexico oil leak and their own responsibility as …

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