Greater City Providence

More NY Times Articles of Note

The NY Times writers and editors have for some time been examining transit and land use issues, but with the economic calamity unfolding and the mood for “stimulus” in the air, they have had many good articles of late.

One is by the liberal-leaning Bob Herbert who, like his conservative co-columnist David Brooks, begs for infrastructure updates first and foremost in the excellent editorial “Risking the Future”:

“The reason to seize this particular moment to move with a laserlike focus on the infrastructure is because of the desperate need to stop the advancing rot, and because rebuilding the infrastructure is a phenomenal source of employment.”

Also, Allison Arieff, the former editor of Dwell Magazine, has a blog of sorts called “By Design” (I don’t quite get the NY Times blogging system or purpose, but whatever…). She has had an interesting two part series called “What Will Save the Suburbs.” Part I is here, part II is here. Two representative quotes:

“I still dream that some major overhaul can occur: that a self-sufficient mixed-use neighborhood can emerge. That three-car-garaged McMansions can be subdivided into rental units with streetfront cafés, shops and other local businesses. In short, that creative ways are found not just to rehabilitate these homes and communities, but to keep people in them.”

“One unanticipated discovery that became clear from the commentary was just how deep an animosity exists between urban dwellers and suburbanites. Perhaps “saving” was the wrong verb to use in the title. True, there are many fantastic suburbs (I grew up in one) but that doesn’t negate the reality of… rethinking how all communities might better be designed, built and experienced.”

I promise these will be my last NY Times links for a while (unless they’re really good). 😉

Bret Ancowitz

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