News & Opinion

All news and opinion articles in chronological order with the most recent first.
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
On the "wrong side of the railroad tracks" from downtown—The East End of Garland, Texas, has significant potential to revitalize. A new plan shows how that could happen.
Fri, Apr 24th 2015 11:22am
Kaid Benfield, Better! Cities & Towns
Streets re-designed with all users in mind—pedestrians, transit users, and bicyclists as well as drivers of motor vehicles—generally deliver safety, environmental, and economic benefits.
Tue, Apr 21st 2015 10:49am
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
A growing number of experts advocate stop light removal to save money, improve safety, make cities more walkable, and boost traffic flow. 
Mon, Apr 20th 2015 11:22am
Better! Cities & Towns is a new online resource dedicated to helping planners, architects, and builders implement a diverse range of housing types for the walkable communities of the future. Opticos Design's Daniel Parolek coined the term "Missing Middle" in 2010 to define a range of housing types that provide a solution to the mismatch between the available U.S. housing stock and shifting demographics combined with the growing demand for walkable urban living. The website features clear definitions of the types of mid-density housing that are most effective for creative walkable neighborhoods, and pin-points the market demographic that demands them. There is an extensive photo catalog and documented examples from around the country with illustrations and tables.
Sun, Apr 19th 2015 10:25pm
Better! Cities & Towns
The Seaside Institute is teaming up with other non-profit organizations in Seaside to sponsor the Seaside Writers Conference from May 11-17. The Seaside Writers Conference is an annual gathering of creative writers from all the nation, and features award-winning writers in poetry and fiction and screenwriting who will offer a full week of intensive writing workshops, on day seminars, school outreach programs, and social events. A limited number of affordable places to stay are available for registrants in the Seaside Academic Village.
Sun, Apr 19th 2015 10:12pm
Better! Cities & Towns
Jerry Spangler, Director of TSW's Architecture Studio, recently talked with the Atlanta Business Chronicle about his passion for church design and the recently completed ChristChruch Prebyterian project, an intown renovation of an office building into a church sanctuary, fellowship areas, and classroom space.
Sun, Apr 19th 2015 9:48pm
Better! Cities & Towns
Opticos Design, Inc., the Berkeley, CA-based urban planning and architecture firm has launched a new website dedicated to Missing Middle Housing. “We felt it was important to create an online resource to help people understand these housing types and what housing planning, zoning, and financing changes are needed to make it possible for these types of homes to be built again,” Opticos’s founder, Daniel Parolek says.
Fri, Apr 17th 2015 8:30am
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
Old Town Burleson, Texas, has many opportunities for placemaking and new pedestrian-oriented development that could enhance the identity of the suburb 10 miles south of Fort Worth, according to a new urban team led by Mithun|Solomon.
Wed, Apr 15th 2015 8:06am
Better! Cities & Towns
New York City clearly outpaced San Francisco as the nation's most walkable city—which is even more impressive when you consider that The Big Apple has about 10 times more people than The City by the Bay.
Mon, Apr 13th 2015 4:02pm
Better! Cities & Towns
The Bryan, Texas Health and Wellness Plan was unveiled Thursday afternoon at the City of Bryan Council Chambers. The  purpose of the LRK-designed plan is to promote healthy, active lifestyles and to support area businesses, St. Joseph Regional Health Center and Blinn College. 
Fri, Apr 10th 2015 5:17pm

Recent books + reviews

The Last Great Walk

The True Story of a 1909 Walk from New York to San Francisco, and Why It Matters Today—A review of a book by Wayne Curtis.

Urban Acupuncture: A concise, entertaining jumble of ideas

Review of Urban Acupuncture, a book by Jaime Lerner. Island Press, hardcover 160 pp., 2014, $19.99

Better parking lot design: Is it enough?

Rethinking A Lot: The Design and Culture of Parking, by Eran Ben-Joseph, MIT Press, 2012, 157 pages, $24.95

Human Transit

How Clearer Thinking about Public Transit Can Enrich Our Communities and Our Lives

Walkable City

How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time.

Advice from a pioneering source, in print again

Toward Sustainable Communities calls for ecological advances and permanently affordable housing in new urbanist developments.

Too Much Magic

Wishful Thinking, Technology, and the Fate of the Nation

Sustainable Urbanism and Beyond

Rethinking Cities for the Future

Design After Decline

How America Rebuilds Shrinking Cities

The Economics of Place

The Value of Building Communities Around People