The prospect of car-free cities, or at the very least car-free streets in dense downtowns has been a goal of livable street advocates for decades. Their reasons revolve around safety and social connectivity, citing the envelope of harm and loss of humanity created in places overrun with automobile traffic. Rarely do such advocates talk about getting… Continue reading Car-Free Cities Need to be a Goal of Climate Justice
This Sunday saw the much anticipated Detroit debut of the popular city event series known as Open Streets. Taking a page from similar events like Portland’s Sunday Parkways or LA’s CicLAvia, Open Streets has pushed more metropolises return street use from automobiles back to human beings. The idea is hardly radical considering the ways in which urban… Continue reading The Debut of Open Streets Detroit: PHOTO ESSAY
Over the last couple years I’ve critiqued the ways urbanists have promoted unaffordable hi-rise condos as being somehow sustainable, how they’ve perverted notions of density and equity for PR purposes with the ultimate goal of making money in real estate. It’s true, making cities so unaffordable that workers can no longer live there is a mistake.… Continue reading Yes, We’re Still Going Broke Subsidizing Sprawl
Imagine the absurdity of somebody saying, “Detroit can’t handle 6,000 Tigers fans flooding downtown with their cars anymore, this has to be put to a stop!” You’d be laughed out of town. But say the same thing about people on bicycles and somehow many nod approval. That’s essentially the hack job Model D shat upon the… Continue reading In Defense of Detroit’s Slow Roll
Last week the perpetually capital-minded CityLab jumped on the corporate sponsored greenwashing train to gush over the forthcoming Olympics in Tokyo. Such a damaged brand are the Olympics – with it’s massive wastes of subsidized funding, razing poor neighborhoods for athletic mega-infrastructure, and general disruption to normal street life – that it’s now necessary to hire numerous firms… Continue reading Tokyo’s Olympic War On the Homeless
“Don’t call me a cyclist!” How many times have you heard that demand from dudes who want utilitarian urban biking to share no similarity with bros in spandex zipping through stop lights? “We’re people on bikes, we’re NOT cyclists!” Okay, whatever. Recently I saw an even more confounding preamble in a StrongTowns article. The author declares, “I don’t ride a… Continue reading Why Do Bicyclists Fear Bicycle Enthusiasm?
Americans like to riot, for better or worse. Better when there’s a just cause, worse when it’s over sports, or pumpkins. With mass media though, a single burning gas station can be looped for hours, giving the impression of mass chaos, as was the case in Baltimore, when in fact that uprising was timid in… Continue reading The Muskegon Streetcar Riot of 1919
Unless your heart’s made of Duke coal, you’ve been mourning a fast growing list of dead rock stars in this current year of our Lord 2016. Perhaps they saw a shit storm a’ comin’ by way of our ever-more depressing political prospects this election and decided it was time to migrate to that VIP section… Continue reading Bowie and Prince are Dead, Long Live the Bowie vs Prince Ride!
A true public space is overtly political in that it is a democratized space. That is, there is no regular programming which dictates the goings on within such a space. Instead, the day to day happenings are largely decided by those who use the place. City government or other municipalities can manage or maintain public space,… Continue reading Public Space Is Fundamental to Democracy, No Wonder It’s Under Attack
It took over a year for Portland’s Citizen Review Commission to issue a ruling regarding the police action of November 29, 2014. In January of this year, the panel came to a 5-3 decision stating that orders issued by the Portland Police Bureau to hundreds of Black Lives Matter protesters were in fact unlawful. CRC’s investigation was the… Continue reading The Sound and Fury of Portland on November 29th 2014