Finding Your New Favorite Bike Route

Somewhere in the relief of cooler weather, the urgency of shortening days, and the beauty of the coming fall, is the drive to find a gradual slope and smooth descent. The only thing left to do is plan the ride. As a regular cyclist and a new North Carolinian, I looked through some of the tools I’ve previously used to plan new routes to see … Continue reading Finding Your New Favorite Bike Route

Chapel Hill Town Council Candidates Speak on Issues of Affordable Housing and Transportation

Fall is in the air, and it’s time for municipal elections!  On November 7, Chapel Hill registered voters will cast their ballots for candidates seeking four available Town Council seats.  The Chapel Hill Town Council is comprised of eight members who serve four-year terms. Recently, the local political blog OrangePolitics hosted a live online forum for the seven Town Council candidates.  Participants included Allen Buansi, … Continue reading Chapel Hill Town Council Candidates Speak on Issues of Affordable Housing and Transportation

Can You Get There from Here?

Long-haul travel between small communities One of the rarely talked-about benefits of living in a major city is that transport between that city and other major metropolitan areas is relatively easy. Not always cheap, but usually easy. Take traveling between Washington, D.C. and New York City: an online search reveals multiple bus companies such as Megabus and Greyhound, both the Amtrak Northeast Regional and Acela … Continue reading Can You Get There from Here?

Kay Blada Recycling: Tackling Infrastructure Problems in Haiti One Bottle at a Time

Living in the U.S., we don’t often imagine recycling to be a privilege. After meeting Johnson Desauguste, a Haitian immigrant living in the U.S., I’ve begun to see it that way. As a junior environmental science major at UNC, I’ve been involved in many environmental organizations, and had some exposure to urban planning. Somehow, meeting Johnson (or “Blada,” as his Haitian family calls him) has … Continue reading Kay Blada Recycling: Tackling Infrastructure Problems in Haiti One Bottle at a Time

Photo Essay: Bicycling Infrastructure in the Netherlands

This summer, James Farrell and Alyson West, UNC City and Regional Planning master’s students, traveled to the Netherlands for a two-week study abroad program. Over these two weeks, they saw some of the world’s best bicycle infrastructure, some of which has been captured in the following photos from their trip. Most major cities in the Netherlands are part of the Randstad, a ring including Amsterdam, … Continue reading Photo Essay: Bicycling Infrastructure in the Netherlands

Michigan Border-to-Border Trail Initiative pushes for 70+ mile trail network

In Michigan’s Washtenaw County, the County Parks and Recreation Commission’s Border-to-Border Trail Initiative is attempting to develop a network of non-motorized vehicle pathways. Currently, over 24 miles of pathways have been paved with more to come. When complete, the B2B will span 70 miles. The Border-to-Border Trail Initiative operates collaboratively with many unique organizations, including the Washtenaw County Parks and the Huron Waterloo Pathways Initiative … Continue reading Michigan Border-to-Border Trail Initiative pushes for 70+ mile trail network

Current Planning-Related Legislation in the North Carolina General Assembly

The Planner’s toolbox is being modified constantly by laws passed and policies enacted at every level of government. Being aware of existing laws, as well as proposed legislation, is important for planners, communities, and advocates working throughout the state. Here’s a sample of the planning-related bills currently under consideration at the state level in the North Carolina General Assembly: House Bill 3 / Senate Bill 34: … Continue reading Current Planning-Related Legislation in the North Carolina General Assembly

America: The Aging, Diverging, and Urbanizing

The Reality and Challenges of Demographic Shifts in America In her 1961 book “The Life and Death of Great American Cities,” Jane Jacobs prophesied that ignoring the importance of sidewalk life and perpetuating automobile dependency in urban planning would have dire social consequences. We have all heard the argument: without eyes on the street, the streets will inevitably become deserted, crime-ridden barrens. Of course, the … Continue reading America: The Aging, Diverging, and Urbanizing