Cities

Cities

Funding transit to reshape the Sunbelt

The city of Phoenix celebrated the dawning of the new year by beginning normal, paying service on its shiny new light rail line. The current 20-mile segment runs from north of central Phoenix through the city, past Sky Harbor airport, …

Cities

'Plan B' efficiency and conservation measures drop energy demand by 2020

Projections from the International Energy Agency show global energy demand growing by close to 30 percent by 2020, setting the stage for massive growth in the carbon dioxide emissions that are warming our planet. But dramatically ramping up energy efficiency …

Cities

The Kheel-Komanoff Plan: A congestion toll to liberate New York

Back in 1993, I took a scalpel to the "AUTO-FREE NEW YORK" sticker on my bike, excising the first "R" so that "AUTO-FREE" became "AUTO-FEE." After years of battling motor vehicles, first as an urban cyclist and later as president …

Cities

Will the McMansion ever die?

"The McMansion has almost become embarrassing to some people. They're listening not just to their wallet but their conscience." -- Illinois builder Scott Van Duzor on the slowing of the McMansion trend (forgive us if we're skeptical -- we've heard …

Cities

How urban life hurts your brain … and what you can do about it

A fascinating little article in Sunday's Boston Globe Ideas section highlights some recent scientific studies on the psychological effects of city life: Just being in an urban environment, they have found, impairs our basic mental processes. After spending a few …

Cities

Amtrak arrests its own contest participant

Getting a grip on climate chaos is going to require a functioning rail system -- one that people will willingly use. Would such a system arrest photographers participating in its own annual photo contest? Every time Amtrak falls apart -- …

Cities

Some ideas for green resolutions that are achievable, meaningful, and maybe even novel

New Year's resolutions, as we all know, are almost entirely pointless -- made in one breath, forgotten in the next. So in that spirit of general futility, I offer a few ideas for green resolutions that, either through novelty or …

Cities

Polishing turds is expensive

Great piece on why LEED-certified houses typically come at a premium. (h/t Sam Smith)

Cities

Stimulus spending going to roads?

Reason to worry about the stimulus bill: Missouri’s plan to spend $750 million in federal money on highways and nothing on mass transit in St. Louis doesn’t square with President-elect Barack Obama’s vision for a revolutionary re-engineering of the nation’s …