William H. Whyte was ‘an American urbanist, organizational analyst, journalist and people-watcher.’ You’ve likely heard the oft quoted line, “It is difficult to design a space that will not attract people. What is remarkable is how often this has been accomplished.” That was William H. Whyte. In the 1970’s, Whyte assembled a group of researchers… Continue reading Revisiting ‘The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces’
A colleague of mine recently asked me who came up with the line, “If aliens came to Earth, they’d probably think cars were the dominant life form.” I’d heard this line before, but had no clue who coined it. After about ten seconds of digging, I found this little gem of a remastered film from the… Continue reading Would Space Aliens Think Cars Are the Dominant Species?
You’ve heard it ad nauseam: Share the Road – a mantra adopted much by cyclists and not at all by motorists. It’s become a passive petition: vulnerable bicyclists begging for enough street space to not be run over and killed from drivers largely indifferent due the empathy-crushing confines of the metal machines they drive. Even worse, groups like… Continue reading It’s Time to Stop Sharing the Road
“Forget the damned motor car, build the cities for lovers and friends.” ~ Lewis Mumford Similar to a piece I wrote recently highlighting the ongoing photographic documentation of bicycle culture, it seemed appropriate to also compile a collection of images detailing the various textures and surfaces of urban landscapes. So often as we traverse our… Continue reading Photographing Metropolitan Topography
When defining a new term, or redefining a marginalized term, it helps to define its converse. The word ‘sustainable’ has become such a meaningless marketing brand. If we’re going to take this one back from the PR firms we’ll need to draw a few lines. The opposite of ‘sustainable’ should be understood to be ‘terminal’.… Continue reading ‘Scorched Earth Urbanism’ and other Quasi-Satirical Street Vocabularies