[ live ] archive

Houston home to “The worst sidewalk in America.”

…according to Dan Burden, world-renowned expert on Walkability, who has been in Houston for a couple days at the invitation of AARP and the Coalition for Complete Streets. As someone who has actually lived, worked, and traveled extensively outside of Houston I’m not even a little bit surprised. Our urban fabric is a joke, our [...]

CNU’s take on the proposed parking ordinance changes

The following statement concerning the proposed changes to the City of Houston’s Parking Reg’s was posted at CNU-Houston.org today. I helped write the statement, so I thought I’d share it with this audience as well. Feel free to leave comments or questions and I’ll respond (on behalf of myself, not CNU) as much as I [...]

Liner Buildings

One of the things that drives me crazy is when I’m walking around somewhere and I encounter a building with a giant blank wall set back some distance from the street. Wearing my capitalist hat, I see these kinds of “nothing” spaces and I just cringe at the lost income that it represents for the property owner. Wearing my urbanist hat, I see these kind of spaces and feel frustrated by the lost opportunity. Where there could be life, there is void. Here’s an idea for how to use these spaces to improve walkability and boost the economy at the same time.

Shifting Priorities on Automobiles

An interesting story I found today states that younger people are increasingly likely to put-off purchasing a personal automobile.  As the story points out, this is likely to have dire long-term consequences for an automobile industry already devastated by the “Great Recession.” This is not surprising.  The downturn in the economy has been especially rough [...]

Traffic Calming via Mirage

A group in Canada has come up with a traffic calming solution they think will decrease the number of children hit by cars in school zones. They’ve created an optical illusion, a painting on the street which – as you approach – takes on the appearance of a little girl chasing a ball into the [...]

Major Kudos to HEB

This is the right way to do the right thing. Regarding the new HEB planned for West Alabama and Dunlavy: A promising scheme by architect Robert Morris allows for a “rainwater harvesting” pond with two fountains, a waterfall and footbridges, a “family meadow” on the southeast side and a “performance meadow” on the southwest side, [...]

Serenbe – Experiencing Urbanism at a Micro Scale

This is Selborne Village, in the Serenbe Development located near Palmetto Georgia. Serenbe is a conservation development, where a very large parcel of land (400+ acres) was largely preserved in its natural state through the development of tiny villages which take up only a small portion of the site. Clustering the development in this way allows for some interesting things to happen, which I think you can see pretty well in the video below.

Parking Ordinance Meeting No. 1

This post will be the beginning of a series regarding parking ordinances in general, and the review of its existing ordinances that the City of Houston is currently conducting. I’ll try to provide some reporting and feedback on the meetings I’m able to attend, as well as some background and commentary on the way these [...]

Tonight: How New Urbanism Advances Mobility and Safety Goals

This is a “must-see” event for fans of the blog. Eric Dumbaugh will be making the transportation engineer’s case for New Urbanism, backed by loads of useful data and case studies. I’ll be introducing the speaker, and I’ll be hanging around a while afterward in case anyone wants to chat.

Hair Balls!

Yours truly was featured in an entertaining blog post from John Nova Lomax at the Houston Press. Lomax wrote about “Dress for the Weather Week,” an idea that I’ve been kicking around with my friends and coworkers for some time…