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The NYPL's Open Maps Project adds 20,000 High Res Maps

The New York Public Library has released more than 20,000 high resolution cartographic works (maps!) for free, to view and download. "We believe these maps have no known US copyright restrictions." All can be viewed through the New York Public Library’s Digital Collections page and downloaded through their Map Warper. (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 31, 2014 - 11 comments

 

Planning Love

V-Day cards for planners, architects, urban designers, landscape architects, transportation engineers, and those who love them.
posted by parudox on Feb 14, 2014 - 15 comments

Healthy cities: public health and urban planning

A new Report on the State of Health + Urbanism (pdf) from MIT looks at the relationship between urban planning and public health, with some surprising findings. The cities covered are Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Minneapolis, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer on Dec 31, 2013 - 52 comments

Google Inactive Account Manager

Google has announced a new feature called Inactive Account Manager "that makes it easy to tell Google what you want done with your digital assets when you die or can no longer use your account."
posted by jedicus on Apr 12, 2013 - 57 comments

Down but not out.

After Forbes magazine declared Dayton, OH, one of America's " fastest dying cities," a group of local media makers created Reinvention Stories. The interactive film/multimedia experience rolls out this month in three acts.
posted by Miko on Mar 4, 2013 - 26 comments

Fake Planning Notices

Phil Lucas has been posting funny fake planning notices around the city of Brighton.
posted by Confess, Fletch on Dec 3, 2012 - 28 comments

Coronet Instructional Films

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 1, 2012 - 41 comments

Athens photos and history.

A 280-page history of Athens (en) with a focus on architecture and planning. 1930s buildings of Athens photothread with multiple pages (selection). Athens Highrises (en). Ambelokipi. Piraeus and more Piraeus. Bits and bobs. The Athens forum.
posted by ersatz on Oct 15, 2012 - 14 comments

You got a lot of money but you can't afford the freeway.

"The Detroit metropolitan area is covered with freeways. Ever freeway you could possible imagine has been built. And they have solved the problem that they identified, which was congestion. The city of Detroit doesn’t really have a problem with congestion anymore. That’s the least of their problems". How demolishing freeways is reviving American cities. [via][bonus]
posted by unSane on Mar 17, 2012 - 83 comments

"They’re not as crappy as other cities' toilets."

Why Portland's Public Toilets Succeeded Where Others Failed. A short documentary on the Portland Loo. Official website.
posted by OverlappingElvis on Jan 25, 2012 - 65 comments

It's like KittenWar for urban spaces

Which place looks safer? Which place looks more unique? Which place looks more upper-class? MIT is crowdsourcing a "perception network" to analyze people's subconscious judgments about urban spaces. Preliminary results for Boston, New York City, Vienna, Salzburg, and Linz (Austria). [more inside]
posted by desjardins on Sep 28, 2011 - 45 comments

The Atlantic Cities

The Atlantic Cities is a new site launched today by the Atlantic. It's about cities.
posted by parudox on Sep 15, 2011 - 23 comments

And the winner for highest pedestrian danger index goes to... Orlando!

Dangerous by Design: an interactive map of pedestrian fatalities in the United States "From 2000 to 2009, 47,700 pedestrians were killed in the United States, the equivalent of a jumbo jet full of passengers crashing roughly every month." How the U.S. Builds Roads that Kill Pedestrians
posted by desjardins on Jun 1, 2011 - 60 comments

Death and Life of American Planning

The Death and Life of American Planning - Planning professor Thomas J. Campanella discusses the legacy of Jane Jacob's effect on planning in America: First: "Privileging the grassroots over plannerly authority and expertise meant a loss of professional agency." Second: " It diminished the disciplinary identity of planning." Third: "The seeming paucity among American planners today of the speculative courage and vision that once distinguished this profession." Have these culminated in turning American planning into a "trivial profession" whose goals of equity, social justice, and sustainability are self-undermined?
posted by stratastar on Apr 30, 2011 - 40 comments

Every day carry

In preparedness circles, EDC means Everyday Carry, being items one keep on or near one's person at all times, to help with both planned and unforeseen events during the day. A lot of opinions about what should be in an EDC kit exist, but the minimum usually recommended seems to be a cell phone, light source and small folding knife. The EDC blog shows pictures and lists of submitters' EDC kit. [more inside]
posted by Harald74 on Mar 25, 2011 - 218 comments

Energy=Mass of City squared

A Physicist Solves the City [more inside]
posted by Ndwright on Dec 24, 2010 - 37 comments

"The deepest of the deep"

In event of moon disaster...
posted by Artw on Nov 5, 2010 - 70 comments

The High Cost of Free Parking

"Eighty-seven percent of all trips are made by personal vehicle and 99 percent of those trips arrive at a free parking space." But that free parking comes at a high cost according to Donald Shoup's research. He advocates for charging the right price for on-street parking and for removing off-street parking requirements. Shoup's ideas are coming to the streets in San Francisco's new demand-responsive parking system. Loyal Shoupistas work to spread and implement his ideas.
posted by parudox on Jul 13, 2010 - 192 comments

Itty Bitty City Committee

Model cities are useful to city planners and architects. But they're also beautiful. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 on Mar 4, 2010 - 23 comments

OASIS

The New York City Open Accessible Space Information System Cooperative (OASIS) is an online, interactive mapping and data analysis application that gives an incredibly detailed view of New York City's open spaces and how they are used. The map enables overlays of information like: transit; parks, playgrounds and open space; zoning and landmarks; current and historical land use; social services; demographics; and environmental characteristics.(via The Ministry of Type, who like OASIS mainly for its pretty map possibilities.) [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco on Dec 15, 2009 - 5 comments

One powerful man's nothing is a hundred men's lives.

Lexington’s Mayor, Jim Newberry, bristled at critical questions about The Dame block, “Nothing of consequence ever happened on that block.” Richie Wireman begs to differ. [more inside]
posted by T.D. Strange on Nov 20, 2009 - 8 comments

Gardens By The Bay

The Gardens will put in place a pervasive garden ambience and quality living environment from which Singapore's downtown will rise, and steer Singapore to the forefront of the world's leading global cities. (via)
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 5, 2009 - 11 comments

Artistic Suburban Culture

Ross Racine's work may be interpreted as models for planned communities as much as aerial views of fictional suburbs, referencing the computer as a tool for urban planning as well as image capture.
posted by netbros on Jun 24, 2009 - 11 comments

Chimp throws stones, gets castrated.

Chimp stores weapons. After throwing cached stones at zoo visitors, the unfortunate animal had his own stones removed. Other examples of foresight and planning in animals are described here and here.
posted by binturong on Mar 9, 2009 - 73 comments

Meet you at the Circl-Serv!

"The plans for Victory City have evolved over a period of 38 years, nurtured by the vision and dedication of Victory City's inventor, Orville Simpson II [no relation]. Mr. Simpson conceived of the general idea of Victory City in 1936, when he was only 13 years old. Afraid of being ridiculed, Mr. Simpson kept his ideas about designing and building the City of the Future to himself … a secret vision he held in his mind... It wasn't until 1960 — after he had embarked on a lucrative career in real estate investing and apartment building management — that Mr. Simpson decided to make his ideas about Victory City known to the general public."
posted by Miko on Dec 7, 2008 - 35 comments

If not in your backyard, then whose?

Newcomers, with the zeal of recent converts, are often the most vocal in resisting change to the neighborhood they have just discovered. An exploration of NIMBYism. If not in your backyard, then whose? Probably a low-income minority group. Opposition to affordable housing is often thinly-veiled racism. How NIMBYism affects a seven-year old boy on LA's skid row. [more inside]
posted by desjardins on Aug 25, 2008 - 61 comments

Coming Soon: A pink hotel, a boutique and a swinging hot spot

The [US] National Trust for Historic Preservation has released its 21st annual list of the nation's Most Endangered Historic Places. Among them: Sumner Elementary School in Topeka, Kansas, (where Linda Brown tried to register for school, resulting in Brown vs. Board of Education); New York City's Lower East Side; California's State Parks; Philadelphia's Boyd Theatre, and several others. The previous 20 years of Most Endangered Historic Places can be found in the Archive. [more inside]
posted by Miko on May 20, 2008 - 16 comments

Encyclopedia of Transportation Planning Strategies

Too much traffic? Can't find parking? Choking on smog? Worried about climate change? Gas prices too high, but you still have to drive? Send your city planner a link to the Online Encyclopedia of Transportation Demand Management strategies. [more inside]
posted by salvia on May 8, 2008 - 7 comments

A Shed By Any Other Name...

"As a great architect once said, 'Buildings should look like what they are'." John Jessop became so frustrated with the red tape required for his company to get permission to build a farm shed, he submitted a sarcastic application . Read his full "Planning Application for Erection of Agricultural Implement Shed" here [pdf, 3 pages]. No word yet on whether the shed was approved. Via.
posted by amyms on Apr 24, 2008 - 27 comments

Tree lined Eco Boulevard

Madrid's "Air Tree" is a working experiment in combining public spaces with energy generation.
posted by Burhanistan on Jan 25, 2008 - 21 comments

So, it wasn't the Happiest Town on Earth?

Remember the Town Disney Built? -- 50% of the homes in Celebration, Florida are up for sale. A failure of corporate-owned and -planned Community™? or just a fallout of the bursting of the housing bubble? And whither New Urbanism? [more inside]
posted by amberglow on Oct 4, 2007 - 66 comments

#7: Ten percent of all city space shall be open land where you can "touch the dirt"

"First we kill the architects..." Photographer Danny Lyon [1, 2, 3, 4] offers ten suggestions for New York City. Suggestion #6: "Leave the World Trade Center excavation exactly as it is and use the space as a freshwater pond planted with pink, white, and yellow lilies..." His essay is only one of many from names you'll recognize in a book called Block by Block: Jane Jacobs and the Future of New York. An associated exhibition opened yesterday [museum, NYT review]. Is New York City moving in the right direction? Is your city? [via] [more inside]
posted by salvia on Sep 26, 2007 - 19 comments

Associative Design

Associative Design - a study of new neighborhood models. requires QuickTime
posted by Burhanistan on Aug 10, 2007 - 10 comments

Get Your Ducks In A Row Or Else

Get Your Ducks In A Row Or Else.

Those Atkins cheesecakes are delicious, but now they're leaving a bad aftertaste.
posted by Robert Angelo on Aug 6, 2007 - 30 comments

...Failure to Communicate...

The Great War on Terror shall be won with Powerpoint.
[Army Lt. General David] McKiernan had another, smaller but nagging issue: He couldn't get Franks to issue clear orders that stated explicitly what he wanted done, how he wanted to do it, and why. Rather, Franks passed along PowerPoint briefing slides that he had shown to Rumsfeld: "It's quite frustrating the way this works, but the way we do things nowadays is combatant commanders brief their products in PowerPoint up in Washington to OSD and Secretary of Defense…In lieu of an order, or a frag [fragmentary order], or plan, you get a bunch of PowerPoint slides…[T]hat is frustrating, because nobody wants to plan [img] against PowerPoint slides."
(Here's briefing standards *.ppt, clipart, and some earlier governmental [pdf] uses of PowerPoint [Cryptome], FAS, along with one from ABCNEWS making the case against Iran.) Also, here are previously related MeFi PowerPoint threads on the Downing Street Memos and the Columbia disaster.
posted by rzklkng on Aug 17, 2006 - 97 comments

The Death and Life of a Great Person

Dark Age Ahead. Jane Jacobs passes on.
posted by Chuckles on Apr 25, 2006 - 49 comments

NYC Google Maps Trip Planner

Yet another Google Maps hack for the NYC subway system. This one helps you plan your trip from point A to point B, and gives you an estimated travel time. Most locals will quickly find that the routes it suggests usually aren't the optimum, however this may be useful for visitors, at least until Friday morning. In the event of a strike, this is your best bet for some form of direction.
posted by allkindsoftime on Dec 14, 2005 - 20 comments

Maybe a graboid got him?

Ed Bacon, friend to skaters, died Friday. He presided over a successful urban renewal campaign (a rarity), yet leaves behind a complex legacy in the city he loved. [bugmenot]
posted by deafmute on Oct 16, 2005 - 18 comments

serious human rights abuses which would undermine an otherwise successful military campaign, and our reputation internationally

In case the Downing Street Papers weren't enough: US State Dept. documents from the National Security Archive, obtained thru a Freedom of Information Act: State Department experts warned CENTCOM before Iraq war about lack of plans for post-war Iraq security, Planning for post-Saddam regime change began as early as October 2001, and ...They provide detail on each of the working groups and give the starting date for planning as October 2001. Entire sections of a Powerpoint presentation the State Department prepared on November 1, 2002 -- including those covering "What We Have Learned So Far" and "Implications for the Real Future of Iraq" -- have been censored as still-classified information. ... (PDFS)
posted by amberglow on Aug 17, 2005 - 41 comments

Philly in 3-D

Is a "virtual" Philly even better than the real thing? Well, GeoSim Systems thinks so. Except for the aroma of freshly-grilled cheesesteak, at least. Their "Virtual Philadelphia" is the most detailed urban imaging system I've seen yet, and you can read about the monumental process of turning photographic images (taken from both aircraft and street-level) into this incredible rendering in a February 17 NY Times article (reg req). And - as expected - Google wants to get in on the action and do the same thing in San Francisco. via BB
posted by luriete on Jun 10, 2005 - 29 comments

Cleveland gets sold down the (burning) river

Cleveland bloggers are organizing against a giant suburban-style shopping plaza called Steelyard Commons (to be built on the site of the city's historic steel factories), which will include an immense Wal-Mart at its core. After City Council passed legislation in February to prevent Wal-Mart from adding a grocery store (causing the Bensonville bullies to "pull out" and scuttle the project), the developer was aided and abetted behind closed doors by Cleveland's mayor, Queen Jane. Despite the mayor's proclamation of "no public money" or tax abatements for the project, there's plenty of evidence to the contrary.
posted by bitter-girl.com on May 20, 2005 - 16 comments

The City (1939)

The City [Parts I & II, each a 15:00+ minute realPlayer video].
An urban planning film from 1939 that takes a nostalgic look at country life, compares it to the hustle and bustle of 1930s big city life, and presents a utopian alternative. Reviews of The City, Parts I & II, can be found at the Prelinger Archives if you want to read about them before you commit to watching the 30 minute movie. I tripped across this while surfing around on the forums at Cyburbia: The urban planning portal. Also notable: Music by Aaron Copland.
posted by Doohickie on Jan 20, 2005 - 14 comments

Don't Hold Back Folks, Let Us Know How You Feel

An Ugly Buildings Hit List seems to be developing in Scotland. The president of the Royal Institute of British Architects is calling for the demolition of the ugliest buildings in Scotland. The Architects have their list, and the press is asking the public to chime in as well (with pictures).
posted by mmahaffie on Aug 23, 2004 - 10 comments

Cyburbia

Cyburbia - the urban planning portal. (Check out the photo gallery.)
posted by PrinceValium on Jun 9, 2004 - 1 comment

Six WTC site plans released

Six WTC site plans released by LMDC public-private partnership. Each idea revolves around a different conception of the memorial and is named for that, while showing variation in the structures that will be built around it. There are 3D renderings from above and from the south of the Battery, and skylines as seen from Jersey City, to show how the concept will fit into the existing neighborhood. None as imposing as the Twin Towers, but several include at least one distinctive structure that will rise above the nearest buildings, so Manhattan pedestrians can navigate again. All may be discussed Saturday in a public meeting at Javits Center, expected to attract 5000. I suspect that figure will be low.
posted by dhartung on Jul 16, 2002 - 57 comments

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