September 2013
Brought to you by the team at EDo News & Views

"Physical solutions by themselves will not solve social and economic problems, but neither can economic vitality, community stability, and environmental health be sustained without a coherent and supportive physical framework."
- The Charter for the New Urbanism
In This Issue
Federal Highway Administration Endorses Guide for Walkable Urban Streets

Urban streets serve a much different purpose than rural ones: They're for walking, socializing, and local commerce, not just moving vehicles. Unfortunately, American engineering guides (and the transportation $$ that follow them) tended not to capture these nuances.  Until now........

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As Amazon Stretches, Seattle's Downtown Is Reshaped

Often a corporation with a grand dream to reshape a city wants tax breaks in return.  Not Amazon.  Unlike one of Albuquerque's largest companies, moving their headquarters from near the Airport almost to Bernalillo, Amazon headed Downtown with no incentives - other than attracting the most talented workers.  The New York Times reports.

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Toward a Nature-Rich Urban Future:  Five Ways (insert your city here) Could Lead the Way

Usually a city rebranding will focus on economic competition.  But what if being competitive would be better served in reimagining a city's future looking through the prism of nature?  Author Richard Louv discusses this in the context of Houston, but given our traditional spot as economic laggard, don't we all think Albuquerque could do better?  Perhaps this could be a wise approach for us.  

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Let's Talk About Good Congestion

Popular destinations tend to be crowded.  New York's Fifth Avenue, San Francisco"s Market Street, Chicago's Michigan Avenue, Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills are all congested, but people keep coming back.  Like cholesterol, there is "good" congestion, and "bad" congestion.  Maybe we should view congestion, in the urban context, as a symptom of success.

How Should We Define a Sustainable City?

Is any definition that focuses primarily on the built environment adequate?  Kaid Benfield thinks not, and broadens our thinking in this challenging article.  

The Rise of Retired Renters is the Housing Market's New Story

In the UK, more older people are stepping off the property ownership ladder, selling their homes to pay off debts or fund retirement, and renting.  Will that be the trend in the USA?  If so, it means walkable, complete neighborhoods and Downtowns will have 80 million Baby Boomers considering them as their future home.  

America Has a Subsidies Problem

Here are the kinds of economic development deals we can no longer afford.  Especially when - as Jeff Speck says in "Walkable City" - most talented people (of all ages) and the companies they attract are mostly looking for a walkable, complete neighborhood, and painted, safe bike lanes.  From Next City.