The 6 minute video from StreetsFilms is inspired by Donald Appleyard‘s work examining the role automobile traffic has on neighborhood connectedness, more specifically the interpersonal connections of the street, A compelling video that uses beautifully designed graphics to make its point, as well as an interview with his son, Bruce Appleyard.
As Sarah Goodyear noted in her review on Grist, the video is:
…more than a tribute to an under recognized urbanist. It’s a reminder of how much still needs to be done to make our streets livable.
As they post-mortem the housing crisis, policy makers are increasingly putting transportation costs under the microscope. Blueprint America visits the car-dependent suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona to learn about how transportation costs are making it harder for families to hold on to the American Dream.
From the transcript:
“First stop: 25 minutes to Mesa, to unload the boys at grandma’s house
20 minutes later, they reach Scottsdale, where Laura lets Tony off in time for his six AM shift as a security guard in a hospital.
“It’s another 15 minutes to Tempe, where Laura works in administration at Arizona State University . After a full day’s work, they’ll do the whole thing in reverse in the afternoon…round trip that’s about 120 miles a day . . .”
“. . .it’s at least about two and a half, two hours. Depending on traffic and stuff.”
HT to Kaid Benfield
A great video on what Mayor Michael Bloomberg and city staff are doing to make the Big Apple the “greatest, greenest big city in the world.” Efforts include enhancing bicycle infrastructure across the city, introducing bus rapid transit to the Bronx, and pedestrianized Times Square, among other bold transportation initiatives.
It’s a must watch for anybody interested in improving our urban quality.
Canadian based rock band Arcade Fire is one of those indie bands that has buck the trend instead of selling out or watering down as they get bigger they just keeps getting better. This week they introduced a revolutionary new music video format.
The Wilderness Downtown uses a mashup of Google’s Street View, HTML5 video and some impressive overlays to create a multimedia viewing experience. All you need to do is input the address you grew up in and it will build an immersive film by director Chris Milk with Arcade Fire‘s “We Used To Wait” around it.
I recommend watching it as soon as possible. While it is not perfect (few pioneering experiments are), it is an extremely cool idea put into action.
The video is especially powerful for me, as the move I grew up in, is the home I watched my first music video in and this memory is only strengthened by the nostalgic atmosphere of the video.
Caveat: The clip requires Google Chrome (or a fully HTML5 Compliant browser). If you aren’t already using it, you really should be, so use this opportunity to download it! Also, for best results, close as many running programs as possible, all the interactive goodness taxes even the speediest processors.
We Used to Wait is found on Arcade Fire’s latest album, The Suburbs. The entire album has an urban planning theme, which makes it all the more awesome. Canadian, interactive AND urbanist, what more could I want!?!
My friend, Nick Bastien, who participated in last years Walk, wrote this great post on this year’s Jane’s Walk, complete with a short video interview. Enjoy, and be sure to check out the original at RailLife.com
Jane’s Walk is back in Phoenix for a second annual stroll through the city. This year, the walk will focus on the Warehouse District just south of downtown and we’ll be learning a lot of cool things about the history of these buildings, the area, and what might be next for this part of town. I personally think the warehouse district has a TON of potential for some great things and am excited to learn more from Yuri about the neighborhood. This past week, I caught up with Yuri to talk about Jane’s Walk. Check out this video, straight from the horse’s mouth!
What: Jane’s Walk Phoenix
Date: Saturday, May 1, 2010
Time: 9:00am – 11:00am
Location: Meet at amenZone in the Warehouse District 106 E. Buchanan St
I can tell ya’ that we had a lot of fun at last year’s Jane’s Walk and I know this one will be pretty darn cool, as well.
Below, you will find a map of the area we will be covering on Saturday. Depending on which direction you are traveling from, there are a couple of different light rail stations for you to use. From the north or west, use Central/1st Ave or Jefferson/3rd St. From the east, exit Washington/3rd and head south a few blocks. Yeah, I guess you could drive, but what’s the fun in that?
View Jane’s Walk Phx 2010 in a larger map
To learn more about Jane’s Walk, feel free to check out their site. The best way to learn is to participate, so I hope to see you there…
These are some photos from last years walk…
If you want to learn more about life along Phoenix light rail system, be sure to check out RailLife.com. it’s filled with great information!
A short video (2:23) of author and New Yorker writer David Owen on how Jane Jacobs‘ book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities influenced his writing of Green Metropolis. (Via: Jane’s Walk USA)
This video is about two people who, arguably, had more of an impact on the course of urban planning than any others—Robert Moses and Jane Jacobs.
Robert Moses was the so-called ‘master builder’ of New York City. As the head of many public authorities he was responsible for much of the automobile infrastructure in New York City built between 1930 and 1960. It could almost be said that Moses need met a freeway proposal he didn’t like, or a neighborhood he did. Ironically Moses never had a driver’s license.
It was Moses’ plans for a Lower Manhattan Expressway in 1962 that Jane Jacobs perhaps was most famous for opposing. Their battle is covered in the second half of this 8 minute video.The video was produced by John Elias and Peter Baum in 2008. (via Planning Commissioners Journal)
Barack Obama answers a question from a man about urban renewal in Toledo, Ohio on August 31, 2008.
Through his Yurbanism brand, Yuri Artibise explores the ‘Y’ of urbanism by sharing ways to make our cities more livable, community-oriented places one block at a time.