urban planning

15 Stories

World Subways Evolving Into 'Master Form'

Are we driven unconsciously toward same organizational pattern?

(Newser) - In a weird convergence of form following function, the world's subway systems are marching toward a kind of "unified theory" of structure for the complex operations. The route patterns seem intuitively logical, but they have developed across different cultures, in different geographies and economies, and often piecemeal over... More »

More Cities Embrace Novel Idea: Smart Shrinking

Planners realizing that population decline isn't always bad

(Newser) - City planners in the US have long focused on managing growth—or on trying to lure back people to restore a declining population. "Now a few planners and politicians are starting to try something new: embracing shrinking," writes Drake Bennett in the Boston Globe . It might mean, for... More »

Rhino City Planned in Sudan

South Sudan aims to rebuild cities in the shapes of animals

(Newser) - South Sudan is expected to become the world's newest independent country after a referendum next year, and planners are working to give it an eye-catching capital. Officials unveiled a $10 billion plan yesterday to rebuild the city of Juba in the shape of a rhino, and rebuild the region's second-largest... More »

Olympic Snub Has Silver Lining for Chicago

Good ideas and sober assessments made during bid should go forward

(Newser) - Chicago failed in its bid to land the Olympics, but look on the bright side, the Tribune urges: If the city builds on the bright ideas and redevelopment plans designed to sway the IOC, it can have all the benefits with none of the hassle. “Bidding for an Olympiad... More »

City-Friendly Trail Talk Hasn't Translated

Obama has right ideas, urban activists say, needs more action

(Newser) - Unlike his immediate predecessors, President Obama is a pretty citified guy, and has ignited hope among urban-policy experts. Obama has made promising appointments, tweaked policy in city-friendly ways, created a new White House Office of Urban Affairs. But, advocates tell Salon, how federal government deals with cities is a tough... More »

Megacities Stagger India

Out-of-control urbanization threatens to drag down Indian economy for years

(Newser) - The explosive growth of India's cities is threatening to drag down the country's economy for decades to come, economists tell the Wall Street Journal. The global trend toward urbanization has gone into overdrive in India, but most cities aren't prepared to deal with the influx of migrants from the countryside,... More »

UN to Israel: Stop Demolition of E. Jerusalem Homes

City planning crisis means thousands of illegally built Palestinian houses

(Newser) - In East Jerusalem, overcrowding and strict rules about where Palestinians can build houses have led to the illegal construction of thousands of homes. Nearly a third of all Palestinian homes in the sector, occupied by some 60,000 people, were  built without permits. In response, the city government has issued... More »

Architects Plan Brave New Paris

Sarkozy proposes futuristic sustainable city

(Newser) - Paris may be getting a facelift, the Telegraph reports. Nicolas Sarkozy invited 10 leading architects to cook up Grand Paris 2030, giving them "the absolute freedom to dream." Sarkozy aims to open up the city to its suburbs, shorten intra-city commutes, and create vast green spaces. The architects... More »

Sorry, Greenies, Americans Still Like Sprawl

(Newser) - When urban planners dream, they dream that Americans will give up on the suburbs in favor of a dense, environmentally friendly, less auto-dependent lifestyle. And it’s never going to happen, David Brooks writes in the New York Times. “Amsterdam is a wonderful city, but Americans never seem to... More »

Ariz. City Gets a Do-Over

Officials annex extra 5 miles for Mesa's new downtown

(Newser) - Mesa, Ariz., is getting a do-over. The financially battered city experienced explosive growth for more than half a century, and municipal leaders hope to recover that vitality, reports the Economist. Their solution? Start building, but not in the strip-mall-and-tract-home model so familiar in the Sunbelt. The city has annexed 5... More »

Vertical Farming Puts Pigs High in the Sky

Urban planners take another look at raising animals, crops in skyscrapers

(Newser) - They're not the most traditional tenants, but pigs, poultry, and crops might be reared in city skyscrapers of the future, drastically reducing environmental damage caused by traditional farms, Scientific American reports. Engineering airflow inside glass towers remains tricky, but the potential for a year-round growing season in the face of... More »

Parking Goes Green, For a Day

Drivers from NY to LA find lawns in place of their favorite spots

(Newser) - Signs of a movement to highlight the need for more urban green space sprouted in cities across the US today, the LA Times reports, turning parking spaces into bite-sized parks. The second annual Park(ing) Day may prove an inconvenience to commuters from San Francisco to New York, but that’s... More »

San Francisco Pioneers Smart Parking Spots

Wireless sensor network will alert drivers to open spaces

(Newser) - The streets of San Francisco will be getting smarter this fall, reports the New York Times. The city is pioneering a program to add sensors to thousands of parking spaces; drivers will be alerted to empty spaces through displays on street signs or via their smartphones. City officials hope the... More »

Energy Prices Hammer Suburban Housing Market

Reversing trend, buyers look to stay near city center

(Newser) - The soaring cost of energy has started the buck the half-century-old trend of migration to suburbs and exurbs, the New York Times reports. The cost of reaching a far-off home, let alone heating and cooling it, is becoming untenable for many. From Atlanta and Philadelphia to San Francisco and Minneapolis,... More »

Near 300,000, New Orleans Hits 65% of Its Former Size

Surge in population one barometer for health of Big Easy

(Newser) - New Orleans is now at 65% of its pre-hurricane population and looks poised to pass the 300,000 mark at any day now. Although many neighborhoods are still in need of rebuilding and dotted with vacant lots, the growth represents a "significant indication of New Orleans' sustained viability as... More »

15 Stories