Category: Infrastructure

It’s Getting Hot in Here!

As a kid going on family camping trips I still remember the exaggerated inhale of ‘fresh mountain air’ upon arriving at our destination, purging our lungs of that stale ‘city air’ and remarking on how crisp and clean it felt in comparison. During the past few weeks, as D.C. and cities across the country faced

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Weighing the Effects of Public Buy-In

Earlier this month, residents in the Atlanta region voted down a 10- year, 1 percent sales tax measure which would have raised about $7.2 billion dollars for the region’s transportation plan.  Now without that anticipated revenue, stakeholders may have to rely on other strategies such as tolling to relieve the region’s congestion issues and new rail

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A Way Forward for Local Infrastructure Investment

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is raising the bar on implementing solutions to his city’s infrastructure needs.  During a wide-ranging discussion in Washington, D.C. today, Mayor Emanuel ticked off the challenges he and other local leaders face in cities and towns across America – congested highways, obsolete water and sewer systems, low capacity telecommunications networks and

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What can demonstration projects teach us about sustainability?

Large- scale demonstration projects—ones that are focused on combining and testing various physical systems within a confined geography– are increasingly gaining popularity with cities interested in pushing the sustainability envelope.   As someone who readily transitioned from architecture to urban planning (eager to address some of the larger-scale systems questions that a section drawing didn’t quite

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Does it Pay to Charge?

No one wants to pay to travel.  But if it means less traffic and quicker travel times, I could get on board with the idea.  In fact, I am on board.  I live in Montgomery County, Maryland where I have access to the recently opened MD 200, the Intercounty Connector, or ICC as it’s more

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“The Next American Economy”

According to an article from the New York Times, the city of Chicago is preparing to partner with the private sector to invest $7 billion in transit, schools and parks.  In the article, Mayor Emanuel hints that this is the kind of drastic investment that will be required for “building a new Chicago.”  In fact,

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The State of the Cities in 2012: Focus on Infrastructure Investment

This is the sixth in a seven-part series about mayors’ 2012 State of the City Speeches. As the rest of America waits for the Federal Government to get its act together and pass a comprehensive transportation bill, cities across the country are recognizing the opportunities that continued infrastructure improvements are having in their cities.  Leslie

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Local Officials behind Growing Support for CDBG, but Process and Partisanship Remain Significant Challenge

For the 7000 cities and towns that receive Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds each year, directly or indirectly, concerns are growing that that the foundation for transformative community projects is beginning to crumble.  Over the last two years, Congress has cut funding for the CDBG program over 25 percent, from about $4 billion to

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Innovation and Cities: Reframing the Dialogue

The first installment in a series on “Innovation and Cities” These are tough times for cities, economically and politically.  Our own research points to a period of managed retrenchment where city leaders are confronted with undesirable choices — cuts in vital services, laying off personnel, delaying needed infrastructure investments, to name a few.  But, times

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Curitiba’s Former Mayor Lerner Offers Valuable Reflections on Designing Sustainable Cities

Last week, Embarq, in conjunction with the other major players in the development world (think: international banks), hosted the ninth annual “Transforming Transportation” Conference to share model practices,  meet with colleagues doing similar work, and address sustainable transport issues worldwide.  This year’s conference focused on “scaling up” – that is, finding ways to emulate/adapt/multiply current

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