Currently browsing category

Cities / Planning

Chicago Architecture Data

A New Archive of Chicago Buildings Goes Beyond the Loop – the new digital archive Chicago Architecture Data is the work of software developer and architectural photographer / writer John Morris and team.  They’ve drawn on information from the 1995 Chicago Historical Resources Survey, city and county tax records and assessor’s data, the blog …

Cities transformed: then/now aerial photos

60 Years of Urban Change: Midwest – striking before and after aerial photos of nine midwestern cities show the profound effect highways and other land clearance projects of the mid-1950s have had in changing the texture of these downtowns over the last 50 years.  The Institute of Quality Communities at …

City and Auto / Functional Ambience

Bauwelt 24:2014  Stadt und Auto – this June 27, 2014 issue of the German weekly Bauwelt has good articles about cars in cities.  Even if you’re German-language-challenged, it’s worth a look for the photos and illustrations of a variety of approaches to harmonizing the tangle of cars, buses, pedestrians, and bicyclists in …

Light, health, sleep, and the buildings you live in

      The Light Therapeutic – article on current research into the effects of light on health, with far-reaching implications for the design of buildings and cities, especially healing environments. What is most startling is the way our bodies respond to light. Gloomy winter days are known to trigger …

Future cities and context

  Future Cities – 44-min discussion on BBC’s The Forum about new cities in the coming decades, especially in developing countries, and what features would make them more livable and vibrant for the largest number of people. If you’re involved in the design of cities, if you live in a growing city, …

Water strategy – what New Orleans can learn from Holland

How the Dutch are Helping New Orleans Stay Dry – excellent 8-min audio interview with New Orleans architect David Waggonner and Netherlands Honorary Consul General Connie Willems about water management and flood mitigation in New Orleans and in the Netherlands.  Even with substantial differences between the two locations – the amount …

Two on China: Connected China app / China’s Urban Billions series

  Connected China: Explaining the Players and Networks within China – post on the always-interesting blog information aesthetics about a “beautifully crafted” app developed collaboratively by Thomson Reuters and Fathom Information Design.  Here’s a direct link to the Connected China app.   [It] tracks and visualizes the people, institutions and relationships that form China’s elite power …

Sustainable construction in the UK

      Best Practices for Sustainable Construction – post on SustainableCitiesCollective has good links, especially for those working in the UK.   Increased flood risk, increased risk of drought and more severe storms means making greater use of sustainable drainage systems such as: green roofs; rainwater harvesting; permeable pavements; infiltration …

NYC’s Urban Green on building resiliency

  18 building resiliency proposals at city council – New York’s Urban Green Council, a chapter of USGBC (U.S. Green Building Council), has recently released their Building Resiliency Task Force Report.  It consists of 18 post-Hurricane Sandy proposals for “making New York buildings and residents safer and better prepared for …

The Codes Project

  The Codes Project – website is “an anthology of the codes, laws and related documents that have created, or sought to create, particular urban forms.”  This project, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, covers codes from “around the world, and from all time periods.” The Directory section …

Compare city characteristics using maps

                Prepare to Waste Your Day With This Fascinating City Comparison Tool – comparative mapping tool, Urban Observatory, was created by Richard Saul Wurman, geospatial firm Esri, and film company Radical Media.  Shown here are two maps showing land dedicated to commercial use in …

Big data, technology, and the management of urban space

  How Will Smart Cities Transform the Future? – post about Cisco Systems Smart+Connected Communities initiative.  It combines data, technology, city services, and infrastructure into a network they say offers unprecedented opportunities (a “potential value of $14.4 trillion over the next decade“) for economic, social, and environmental sustainability.   This is …

U.S. flood trends and Smart Irrigation Month

  Our Flooded Future, According To FEMA – “By 2100, the area of the U.S. at risk for inundation will increase 45%. These maps–from the guys who are going to have to deal with it–show where.”     5 Strategies to Maximize Smart Irrigation Month – the five strategies in this …

Active Design Guidelines

      Center for Active Design: Resources – links to design guidelines aimed at architects, urban designers, planners, policy makers, communities, developers, and educators wishing to promote health “through the design of buildings, streets, and neighborhoods.”  The original publication Active Design Guidelines has been followed with four supplements: Promoting Safety …

3 for bicycle riders

The Atlantic Cities often covers how cities and urban areas around the world accommodate bicycle traffic.  Here are three recent posts:   10 Brilliant Pieces of Bike Infrastructure – examples, many with clips, from ten cities in Europe, China, and the U.S.   A Real-Time Bike-Share Map for the Entire World – …

Building energy performance regulations

If you’re interested in energy requirements or ratings for buildings around the world, here are a few sites that can give you specifics.  Each link is to one section within a larger website; those parent websites are all worth a bit of further exploration as well. Existing Policies, from BuildingRating.org –  select …

Crowdsourced urban design – My Ideal City

My Ideal City / Mi Ciudad Ideal – six-month collaborative urban design project from PSFK and W Radio in Bogota, Columbia is using social media to generate discussion and ideas from around the world.  The results will be reviewed by an architect and urban planner as they redevelop a neighborhood in …