Greater City Providence

News & Notes

New York’s bike lanes are ‘homegrown terrorism,’ say red-faced opponents [Grist]

“Share the Road” has one potential fatal flaw: It involves sharing, which a lot of purported adults haven’t really mastered. Matthew Shaer’s exhaustive history of the NYC bike lane struggle, in this week’s New York magazine, shows just how much people have to mature before a community — even Brooklyn — can become truly bike-friendly. Step one: Stop calling bike lanes “homegrown terrorism.”

Also from Grist, The latest battle in the nonexistent ‘War on Cars’.

A Desire Named Streetcar [Architect]

The New Orleans experience also helps answer a common question among transit planners and cash-strapped municipalities: Why streetcars? Why not just expand bus routes? They’re cheaper, more flexible to route, and far quicker to implement.

Developers like the permanence of streetcars. Nobody invests in a retail complex or apartment building because it’s near a bus stop-that could move next week. But streetcar systems, which cost on the order of $40 million a mile, are viewed as longer lasting, certain to be around for at least a generation. You can put money on them.

The End Of The Road: Saying Goodbye To Freeways [NPR]

This is the city planner’s dream: Take out an underused freeway, open up land for new businesses or parks and magically more workers will move back to the city and property values will soar. So far, though, the results have been mixed.

EU to ban cars from cities by 2050 [The Telegraph]

The European Commission on Monday unveiled a “single European transport area” aimed at enforcing “a profound shift in transport patterns for passengers” by 2050.
The plan also envisages an end to cheap holiday flights from Britain to southern Europe with a target that over 50 per cent of all journeys above 186 miles should be by rail.

The Rush to Build Walkable Urban Grocery Stores [UrbanLand]

Downtowns and urban neighborhoods are seeing new grocery store development, with a revolution in store design, location in mixed-use projects, parking solutions, and role within neighborhoods. In addition, in 2011 there will be tremendous churn in the grocery market, with much of it focused on cities. With traditional grocers like A & P filing for bankruptcy, independent grocers and national chains alike are licking their chops, seeking a place in the multiple-niche urban environment.

Greater City Providence

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