Back to the Future: New York City explores streetcar transit route linking outer boroughs

City Terrain, East, News, Transportation, Urbanism
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
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(Friends of the Brooklyn Queens Connector)

(Friends of the Brooklyn Queens Connector)

Remember the New York City streetcar? Unless you’re a New Yorker of a certain age, you definitely don’t. Advances in transportation technology (what die-hard conspiracy theorists refer to as Great American Streetcar Scandal) drove streetcars all over the U.S. straight to the last stop. Yet, it’s now very possible that two neighboring boroughs, Brooklyn and Queens, will be reunited once again via a new streetcar line of their very own.

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French proposal to pave roads with solar panels could provide power for 5 million people

(Courtesy Joachim Bertrand, COLAS)

(Courtesy Joachim Bertrand, COLAS)

French authorities have announced that it plans to lay over 600 miles of solar roads within five years. Research from a five year study in collaboration with highway company COLAS indicates that the roads could provide power to up to 5 million people, or 8 percent of France’s population. However, some claim that the French government is merely subsidising French companies and not following the best road for alternative energy solutions. Read More

Pedal Power: London could soon have more cyclists than motorists on its streets

(Tejvan Pettinger / Flickr)

(Tejvan Pettinger / Flickr)

Since the turn of the century, the number of motorists in London more than halved from 137,000 to 64,000. In the same period, cyclist numbers trebled from 12,000 to 36,000, showing that more commuters are increasingly choosing two wheels over four to get to work.

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Enrique Peñalosa plans to give Bogotá the best transit system in the developing world

Enrique on a bus headed from Denver to Boulder (ITDP / Flickr)

Enrique on a bus headed from Denver to Boulder. (itdp / Flickr)

An economist who once advised Colombian President Virgilio Barco, Enrique Peñalosa is now a revered urban planner in the city of Bogotá. Having once served as Bogotá mayor from 1997 to 2001, Peñalosa is now back for his second stint and pledges to provide his city with the best public transportation system in the developing world.

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Philadelphia set to appoint the first-ever Complete Streets Commissioner

City Terrain, East, News, Transportation, Urbanism
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
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(karmacamilleeon / Flickr)

(karmacamilleeon / Flickr)

Philadelphia officially recognizes cyclists as a constituency deserving special protection. This week, Mayor Jim Kenney announced the creation of a “Complete Streets Commissioner,” a new position in city government to oversee the creation of more bike-friendly infrastructure. But the story gets complicated from there.

Continue reading after the jump.

Anything but boring: World’s largest tunnelling machine, Big Bertha, is stuck under Seattle, Tweets an interview

A close-up view of Bertha’s cutterhead. Flickr / WSDOT CC BY 2.0

A close-up view of Bertha’s cutterhead. (Flickr / WSDOT)

Big Bertha, Seattle’s famous tunnel boring machine, is stuck underground again. Bertha was running for just under a month following a two year delay to fix a broken cutter head. And the machine has taken to Twitter, as we imagine it can get lonely so far beneath the city.

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The end of the Los Angeles’ Sixth Street bridge brings a subdued HNTB-Maltzan design

Architecture, Transportation, Urbanism, West
Thursday, January 28, 2016
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Recent renderings of the Sixth Street Bridge. (HNTB with Michael Maltzan Architecture/ Courtesy Mayor Eric Garretti/ Facebook)

Recent renderings of the Sixth Street Bridge. (HNTB with Michael Maltzan Architecture/ Courtesy Mayor Eric Garretti/ Facebook)

So long, Sixth Street Bridge. We knew it was coming, but Wednesday marked the last day the iconic Art Deco span would be open to the public. Built in 1932, the iconic double-loop overpass over the L.A. River will live on in movies, videos, and photos.

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Pininfarina and AECOM top Fuksas and Hadid to win Istanbul New Airport commission

Runway view of Istanbul ATC. (Courtesy Pininfarina)

Runway view of Istanbul ATC. (Courtesy Pininfarina)

Pininfarina and AECOM have won an international competition to design an Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower and technical building at the Istanbul New Airport. The team was selected from a competitive shortlist, which included Zaha Hadid, Fuksas, Moshe Safdie, Grimshaw-Nordic, and RMJM.

More after the jump.

New Delhi and Milan scale back on automobile usage to combat runaway air pollution

Smoggy New Delhi (Stephan Rebernik / Flickr)

Smoggy New Delhi (Stephan Rebernik / Flickr)

New Delhi has taken emergency measures to deal with the particularly thick and noxious air that has covered India’s capital city this winter. For the first two weeks of the New Year, the city has enacted an odd-even rule, which stipulates that even-numbered license plates be allowed on the roads only on even-numbered dates, and odd-numbered license plates only on odd-numbered dates.

And others are following suit.

Dormant for 70 years, South London’s war-time tunnels now open to the public for the first time

International, Transportation
Thursday, January 7, 2016
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Beds on display (Diamond Geezer / Flickr)

Beds on display (Diamond Geezer / Flickr)

On the surface, Clapham South is your standard Northern Line tube station, complete with art deco decorum to boot. Situated in South London in what was once a gritty part of the capital, but now a typically gentrified area, there are more than just tube tunnels that run below the ground.  Read More

How Salt Lake City might add buildings in the medians of its extra-wide streets

(Courtesy Kentlands Initiative)

(Courtesy Kentlands Initiative)

Over the course of four years, the Granary District of Salt Lake City has been trialling “median development” whereby pop-up shows, stands, and other forms of temporary architecture exist literally in the middle of the street. Now, James Alfandre, director of the Kentlands Initiative, proposes something more concrete.

Continue reading after the jump.

AIA Chicago outlines Pullman’s future as a National Monument

Night view of historic Pullman Sleeping Car Factory by night. Image Courtesy Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

Proposed night view of historic Pullman sleeping car factory. (Image Courtesy Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture)

As part of the ongoing preservation efforts surrounding the South Side Chicago neighborhood of Pullman a print and online book has been released reporting the results of a workshop conducted by AIA Chicago and the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) in April 2015. Positioning Pullman gives a history as well as a possible way forward for the once flourishing company neighborhood, which has recently been designated a national monument by President Barack Obama.

Continue reading after the jump.

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