Greater City Providence

News & Notes

The Transport Politic: Time to Fight – With a House like this, what advances can American transportation policy make?

Actions by members of the U.S. House over the past week suggest that Republican opposition to the funding of alternative transportation has developed into an all-out ideological battle. Though their efforts are unlikely to advance much past the doors of their chamber, the policy recklessness they have displayed speaks truly poorly of the future of the nation’s mobility systems.

The New York Times: How About Gardening or Golfing at the Mall?

Malls, over the last 50 years, have gone from the community center in some cities to a relic of the way people once wanted to shop. While malls have faced problems in the past, the Internet is now pulling even more sales away from them. And as retailers crawl out of the worst recession since the advent of malls, many are realizing they are overbuilt and are closing locations at a fast clip

Urbanophile: The Software of Placemaking by Rod Stevens

Using the tech metaphors so common now, we have tended to focus on the “hardware” of place, the land, bricks and mortar. But maybe it is time to think more in terms of the “software”, of how we program and run places day to day.

There are two masters who have done this with real estate, one on the East Coast and one on the West Coast, and they have both been at this with single properties for more than 20 years. One is Dan Biederman of the Bryant Park Corporation, who has made that Midtown Manhattan space one of the world’s most densely used parks. The other is Ron Sher, who has turned the Crossroads Mall in Bellevue, Washington into the kind of active public people place that suburban communities lust after.

Greater Greater Washington: Streetcars will benefit DC’s bottom line

Will DC’s streetcar system be worth its $1.5 billion expense? A recent study indicates that the answer is a resounding yes.

One of the key differences between buses and streetcars is that streetcars induce land development. That benefits the city from a Smart Growth and urbanist perspective. It also turns out to be a big win for the city’s coffers.

Greater Greater Washington O’Malley’s sales tax on gas is the right way to fund transport

In his Wednesday state-of-the-state speech, Governor Martin O’Malley proposed ending the exemption of gasoline from Maryland’s 6% sales tax. This is the best way for the state to get more money for transportation.

Greater City Providence

Promoting the smart urban growth of the Greater Providence region.

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