Posts Tagged ‘policy’

E Pluribus Unum

In response to President Obama’s speech today I spent some time thinking about our immigration policy. This isn’t within my normal area of expertise, but it is something that I think everyone should spend some time thinking about. The truth of the matter is, politicians have been screwing this up for generations, and I don’t [...]

Playing by the Rules

A short thought for today. I read an article on the Chronicle that I found interesting, titled “Blending Elegance and Fast Food.” Here are the most relevant excerpts: Fast-food restaurants in upscale planned communities such as First Colony, Cinco Ranch and The Woodlands shatter some basic assumptions about retailing. Fast-food chains are used to having [...]

Thoughts on Obama’s speech to the Council of Mayors

As I’m sure you’ve all heard by now, President Obama had some interesting things to say at his meeting with the US Council of Mayors last week. Naturally, many of the people interested in sustainable urbanism have been quite excited by the remarks. Let’s take a closer look at what the President actually said. Is it worth getting excited about, and if so, why?

Peter Brown’s Traffic Plan

I had a chance to look over Peter Brown’s traffic plan this weekend. It’s a pretty good document, and while it doesn’t go into tremendous detail it does clearly spell out his approach to traffic management. Kuffner wrote a great summary last week, so for the general idea take a look at his post. I [...]

Cap and Trade

Cap and Trade is through the House, now Obama’s team is working on pressing it through the Senate. The legislation is in its early stages, but as it is proposed today it would mandate a reduction to 17% of 2005 levels of greenhouse gas emmissions by 2020. In general, the Republicans are opposed to this [...]

Update on Transit Corridors

Alright, I’m back from vacation in Alaska, and I have an¬†update to add to my previous post on the proposed Transit Corridor Streets ordinance. First, if you haven’t read it, Christof wrote a very detailed explanation of what the ordinance does and doesn’t do. If you want to understand the nuts and bolts of this [...]

Houston Tomorrow Form-Based Codes Presentation

This was an interesting presentation, though somewhat limited in its applicability to Houston. While form-based code is extremely relevant for Houston, most of the panel presenters were focused on understanding the difference between conventional zoning and form-based code, and they spent most of their time talking about the processes and challenges involved in transitioning from conventional [...]

Land Use Morals

These kinds of things frustrate me… Houston Strategies posted this story, which recaps this story. Both of them basically attribute all of Houston’s economic success to it’s no-zoning approach to land-use regulation. I certainly agree that Houston’s lean regulatory system helps the economy, there’s no question about that. I usually agree with the things Tory [...]

Thank Goodness for Ed Emmett…

I don’t want to speculate on the outcome of this election too generally. I wasn’t overly impressed with either of the major candidates, and as no other party even made a ripple this year, I found it a rather boring election cycle. I will say this, I am *thrilled* to hear that Ed Emmett will [...]