Tag Archives: urban fabric

Portland: A Challenging Chart

Portland is supposed to be one of America’s great transit success stories. Is it still? Do we know what it’s achieving? Do we know how to measure it?

A couple of months ago Portland reader Adrian Lawson pointed me to an Oregon Catalyst article ridiculing the Portland Metro goal of tripling non-auto mode share by 2035. The author, John Charles, Jr., is the CEO of the Cascade Policy Institute, a conservative Oregon think tank that opposes Oregon’s land use planning system and generally favors roads over transit, so this is not a surprising view. Continue reading

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Clip-on Architecture: Reforesting Cities

Much of the literature related to the role of the built environment in climate change has focused on new technologies and new ideas which might be implemented in new buildings. Tabula rasa eco-cities trumpeting their green credentials and high levels of environmental sustainability are being planned in the U.S., China, and Abu Dhabi, among other places, and green is the word of the day. Despite these ambitious plans for new cities, one might ask, with all the urban fabric which currently exists, why build at all, and most especially on such a massive scale?
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Seattle, Vancouver, and Portland by Rail, Bus, Streetcar, and Foot: Part One

I grew up during the grunge era, with Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder for role models, and the notion that a city could simultaneously spawn and embrace musical icons of social and political dissidence and the bourgeois haughtiness of, say, Frasier Crane, always fascinated me. Seattle was the only major coastal city in the U.S. I hadn’t yet spent time in; I was ready to fall in love. Continue reading

Posted in Dispatches, Josh Grigsby, Rants, Response Pieces, transit, Transportation, What if? | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments