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What this election means for planners

As you likely know, November 8 is Election Day in the United States. Voters will decide who will succeed President Obama and, with that decision, the policy direction for our nation over the next four years. As our nation’s largest cities continue to grow, federal policy, particularly in terms of housing and transportation, will play a significant role in shaping the evolution of our nation’s urban … Continue reading What this election means for planners

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Incorporating Immigrants’ On-the-Ground Knowledge and Lived Experiences into the Planning Process

A special post from participatory practitioner James Rojas Immigrants bring new, innovative urban planning ideas to this country based on their prior lived experiences, yet these ideas are rarely heard in an urban planning meeting or incorporated into zoning and plans. Most immigrants don’t attend public meetings. Many are busy struggling and often live in the shadows of our communities. Many may be too humble, or … Continue reading Incorporating Immigrants’ On-the-Ground Knowledge and Lived Experiences into the Planning Process

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After the Flood, the Decision to Rebuild or Leave Permanently

As I write this, residents from flooded neighborhoods in eastern North Carolina are sitting in crowded high school gyms, staying at area motels, and bunked with family and friends. While Hurricane Matthew threw high winds and storm surge at coastal communities, devastating flooding came to inland communities. Rivers bulged over their banks, entering homes and covering roads in a growing mass of moving water. When … Continue reading After the Flood, the Decision to Rebuild or Leave Permanently

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Little Boxes on a Hillside: A Review of New Urbanism

As a design and development practice, New Urbanism (NU) emerged in response to widespread suburban sprawl across the United States. The movement seeks to create vibrant, healthy, and sustainable communities through human-scale urban design. NU’s fundamental tenants include walkability, connectivity, mixed uses, architectural diversity, green infrastructure, and increased density. But it’s rise in popularity since the 1980’s has not been without controversy. Critics of NU … Continue reading Little Boxes on a Hillside: A Review of New Urbanism