Union Station is a place where all points meet, where city, region, and world come together. It is where bold planning for Chicago should be reborn.
There will be an incredible drive to build and expand cities in this century, requiring much quicker, more efficient ways of planning and construction.
Planners at work, grappling with the world as it is, facing the constant challenge of bringing ideas into practice.
Planning Chicago, by Jon DeVries and Brad Hunt, calls for a return to big ideas in a city once famous for bold planning. The authors decry the lack of vision and failure to implement that has beset Chicago planning for decades.
For more than 2 years I led an environmental advocacy org in the industrial Lake Calumet area…I stitched together the city’s plans and added a few ideas of my own, assembling a regional strategy on an illustrated map…
Cook County led the way in planning and building the expressways that now run through the heart of the city. I reported on the county's first comprehensive transportation plan since 1940, writing for BuiltWorlds. The new plan is about walking and bicycling and simply trying to hold the huge system together. How times have changed.
Masdar City in Abu Dhabi is a very interesting attempt to build a low-carbon sustainable city in the Middle East.
Planning codes are interesting when applied in regional schemes, so I wrote this article for the APA Regional newsletter, Frontier of form-based codes. Whether the 'floating zone' towns and villages ever get built as planned is another story.
My first published article was about the Coffee Creek conservation development in Indiana. I was a new staff planner at NIPC learning about the rising practice of suburban conservation design. I became fascinated with the concept of the “culture of water,” as friend and planner Jim Patchett puts it. ULI kindly published a feature length piece.
his guest essay appeared in Illinois Issues in 2006, shortly after the consolidation of the two regional agencies in Chicago. I argued that the underlying division remained and that regional planning would not become truly effective until there was internal unification of the whole agency under one board as ‘metropolitan planning organization’.
I was a young staff planner at NIPC working on the regional plan when, in winter 2003, I went up to McHenry County and asked the Farm Bureau to put a public meeting together to talk about farmland. We assembled a large group for that meeting, which occurred on a really cold night in early February. The Bureau helped me bring out some farmers, while some real estate people also showed up apparently to defend their interests. A farmer there of long standing in the county, I can't recall his name, expressed a sense of care for the land, although...
This article appeared in the APA International Division's newsletter (2016 pre-conference issue), called A Planner's work... It contains a reference to Steve's white paper, Impending revolution in planning practice It’s always interesting to watch a real planner at work, and even more interesting when s/he is working 7,000 miles from home. I was in Dubai for a few days last year when Stephen Goldie, an Australian who I first met at a CNU conference some years ago, invited me to visit him in Al Ain. I jumped at the opportunity. Al Ain is in...
Planners are now devoted to building up little cities around rail stations, and if that can be done in metro Dallas it can be done anywhere. The movement toward station density was just getting started when I wrote Suburbia Revisited.
A profile of a farmer that appeared in Illinois Issues, April 2003. Growing Change portrays a farmer who's struggle with nature to conserve his soil is much easier than his struggle with commodity markets.
A guest essay appearing in Illinois Issues, October 2000, in which I call for a regional dialogue on farmland, to consider farmland as land, which in those days of booming development was unlikely. I argue for farmland at the city's edges.
An article published in Planning Magazine, January 2002, corresponding with the annual planning conference, which was in Chicago that year. I summarize efforts of the many (too many) groups with their hand in the regional planning arena, in Stretching the Boundaries
An article about the ideas of designer William McDonough was published in Conscious Choice in April, 2002 . Read A different kind of recovery Conscious Choice, April '02
This article, subtitled The Beauty and the Promise of Conservation Design, appeared in Conscious Choice in April, 2001. Read Sustainable suburbia Conscious Choice, April '01