Urban Design For Everyone (UD4U)

By Matthew Clapper | Most recent and interesting Urban Design news, brought to you by the team at udforu.com

Why 96 million plastic ‘shade balls’ dumped into the LA Reservoir may not save water

In 2015, the world watched as a video of 96 million “shade balls” getting dumped into the Los Angeles Reservoir went viral. The purpose of the balls: …

Don’t ban scooters. Redesign streets.

Cities are regulating mobility startups, but ignoring the real problem—there’s still too much space for cars<p>Over the last few months, I’ve spent a lot of time looking at century-old images of U.S. streets. There’s a window of a dozen or so years at the beginning of the 20th century, at the dawn of …

Urban Design

Will Mecanoo’s “Blue District” in Utrecht Promote a Generation of Urban Centenarians?

That’s the goal, at least. Mecanoo has released designs for a large-scale development in Utrecht inspired by “blue zone” regions - areas where …

Boston neighborhoods: How they got their names

Geography, infills, independence movements—all these and more played roles in shaping the city’s positional vocab<p>Boston is named after the town of Boston in eastern England. But what about the city’s neighborhoods? A lot of them have similar roots in old Albion, while a sizable chunk are tethered …

How The Digital Revolution Will Make Cities Produce Everything They Consume… Again

<i>This summer, July 11-13, the annual</i> <i>Fab City Summit</i> <i>will take place in Paris at the Paris City Hall and Parc de La Villette. The yearly event will</i> …

10 Streets that Changed America

From Broadway to Wilshire Boulevard, a new PBS show examines how street life defines our city life<p>Americans define their homes in many different ways, but few parts of the landscape capture the culture of a city or the rhythm of daily life better than a signature street. From small town Main …

How Cincinnati Salvaged the Nation’s Most Dangerous Neighborhood

Leaning on the power of local corporations, officials engineered a renaissance in the city’s heart.<p>Just five years ago, David Knox and two colleagues took a risk. They relocated their nascent organization to Over-the-Rhine, a Cincinnati neighborhood that had been the site of days of civil unrest in …

The Van Alen Institute, in Partnership with The New Yorker, Explores Climate Change in Miami

In its new Sessions series, the nonprofit shows the effects of climate change through a variety of lenses<p>"The results are visible," says landscape architect Jennifer Bolstad of the effects of climate change on Miami. "Even if people say they don’t believe in climate change, they believe in an …

The High Cost of Saving Travel Time

Are commuters changing how they value their minutes? A new study of time/cost trade-offs between transit, Uber, and Lyft is a hint.<p>Time is a precious and nonrenewable resource. Lose it or save it, and you can’t trade it in for something else. But time can be traded <i>off,</i> depending on how you value …

Lincoln Yards entertainment district photos

Concert promoter Live Nation is set to create an entertainment district at the proposed Lincoln Yards development on the North Side.

Hotel, residential and office space planned for land around Union Station

After years of big-picture planning and behind-the-scenes bargaining, plans are finally forging ahead to redevelop Amtrak-owned Union Station, the …

How the Koch Brothers Are Killing Public Transit Projects Around the Country

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A team of political activists huddled at a Hardee’s one rainy Saturday, wolfing down a breakfast of biscuits and gravy. Then they descended on Antioch, a quiet Nashville suburb, armed with iPads full of voter data and a fiery script.<p>The group, the local chapter for Americans for …

Urban Design

North Station-South Station connection would cost at least $12.3 billion: Report

Long-sought Boston infrastructure project seems evermore distant<p>Directly connecting North Station and South Station in downtown Boston—one of the largest and longest-sought infrastructure developments in the region—would cost at least $12.3 billion, according to a study that state officials …

Here's how Louisville proposes to 'reimagine' Ninth Street - Louisville - Louisville Business First

<b>Get FREE Newsletters and Alerts</b><p>Morning Edition, Afternoon Edition, Breaking News.<p>Sign Up<p>Louisville Metro Government and Mayor Greg Fischer have a new …

How to Pedestrianize a Vital Urban Street

London’s plans for Oxford Street show that even the busiest roads can ban vehicles—but there's one major misstep.<p>Finally, it’s happening. After years of discussion, London’s Oxford Street is being pedestrianized. A key London axis known for its huge popularity as a place to shop—and its equally …

Does Logan Boulevard Need Protected Bike Lanes? Cyclists Tired Of ‘Horror Show’ Commutes Say Yes

LOGAN SQUARE — Part of Logan Boulevard is considered perilous for bicyclists and pedestrians, so a transportation group wants the neighborhood to …

In praise of gentrification

GENTRIFIER has surpassed many worthier slurs to become the dirtiest word in American cities. In the popular telling, hordes of well-to-do whites are …

50 Planning Terms & Concepts All Architects Should Know

As architects, we often use a niche set of words that are sometimes unnecessarily complex and confusing to our non-architect friends. In 2015 we …

The Amazing Psychology of Japanese Train Stations

The nation’s famed mastery of rail travel has been aided by some subtle behavioral tricks.<p>It is a scene that plays out each weekday morning across Tokyo. Suit-clad office workers, gaggles of schoolchildren, and other travelers gamely wend their way through the city’s sprawling rail stations.<p>To the …

Trains

Free trams of Melbourne - Gehl

1<p>World Cities Summit<p>Jan Gehl<p>Professor<p>Jul 10, 2018<p>Marina Bay Sands, Singapore<p><b>Panel debate</b><p>past event<p>IFHP Presentation<p>More info here<p>1<p>— July 9, 2018<p>Har …

CDOT Proposes Bike Upgrades for Drexel, But Some Folks Want More Car Parking Instead

The city is considering reconfiguring the bike lanes and/or parking on Drexel Boulevard from 39th and 51st, which is currently a fairly tranquil …

Seattle and Columbus Show How Cities Can Win

In the modern U.S. economy, prosperity depends more and more on creating successful cities. But what is success, and how can it be achieved? Seattle, Washington, and Columbus, Ohio, offer some clues.<p>In tracking the rise and fall of American cities, people often pay attention to population growth. …

Could Congestion Charges Work in Latin America?

Something must be done as car sales increase and cities grow. A new study envisions a plan for Mexico City, Bogotá, and Santiago, but says improving public transport is essential.<p>Latin America is home to several growing megalopolises and an expanding urban landscape. According to UN-Habitat, São …

No small plans for 62-acre South Loop site along Chicago River

A developer has taken the wraps off one of the most ambitious real estate projects ever conceived in Chicago, laying out plans to construct 13 million square feet of buildings — including skyscrapers up to 950 feet tall — on a riverfront site connecting the South Loop and Chinatown.<p>Related Midwest …

Yes, Transit-Rich Neighborhoods Are More Affordable

Contrary to the implications of a recent attention-grabbing study, “location efficiency” matters—good transit does lower transportation costs. Decades of research show how.<p>In October 2017, a study called “Complicating the Story of Location Affordability” appeared in the journal <i>Housing Policy …

Paris Gets Serious About Free Transit

The city is launching a study to explore the possibility of going fully fare-free.<p>You can’t fault Paris for ambition. After banning the most polluting vehicles from the city, pedestrianizing the Seine’s banks, and generally pushing the transformation of the French capital into one of the least …

My neighborhood was redlined — was yours?

Where did these maps come from?<p>The Home Owners’ Loan Corporation (HOLC) was created during the Great Depression to rescue homeowners from defaulting …

Seattle Unanimously Passes an 'Amazon Tax' to Fund Affordable Housing

The compromise bill to fund affordable housing and homelessness programs is a thermometer for how cities regulate rapid economic growth.<p>Amidst signs that read “Tax Amazon” and chants of “housing is a human right” the Seattle City Council voted unanimously Monday to impose a controversial tax on the …

Seattle City Council

France Plans an Extreme Makeover for Struggling Small Cities

Action Coeur de Ville aims to undo the damage of urban sprawl in more than 200 city centers across the country.<p>France’s city centers are about to get one of the biggest makeovers in their history. Following an announcement last month, the country is launching a vast €5 billion ($6.1 billion) plan …

Urban Design