News & Opinion

All news and opinion articles in chronological order with the most recent first.
Ben Brown, Better! Cities & Towns
Ten years after the mega-storm Katrina, which struck the Gulf States on August 29, 2005, is as good a time as any to look back on what we’ve learned since, especially when it comes to safe, appealing, affordable housing.
Mon, Aug 31st 2015 4:07pm
Better! Cities & Towns
The MRED+U Program hosts executive education training programs for real estate professionals seeking to keep up with state-of-the-art real estate practices as well as sharpen their theoretical understanding of the industry.  We offer training in real estate applications in Microsoft Excel as well as ARGUS Valuation-DCF for individuals at all experience levels in addition to a seminar on how to conduct a charrette and an online course in applying New Urbanist theory to real estate practice.  For more information, please see below.  Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about a course or would like to register for one.
Fri, Aug 28th 2015 4:13pm
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
Once a railway coal siding and more recently a full city block of asphalt surface parking, North Philadelphia’s Paseo Verde now provides affordable, high quality, sustainable housing for a range of income levels.
Thu, Aug 27th 2015 9:49am
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
The impact of streetcars on neighborhoods, development, and commercial districts has come up in several reports that I have come across recently.
Wed, Aug 26th 2015 2:52pm
Better! Cities & Towns
Norman Garrick of the University of Connecticut writes about the demise of Hartford's commercial districts and what steps could be taken to bring them back to life. 
Tue, Aug 25th 2015 3:40pm
Robert Steuteville, Better! Cities & Towns
Housing in cities centers have increased in value by 50 percent more than surrounding metro areas in the last two decades, according to the financial rating agency Fitch.
Mon, Aug 24th 2015 4:32pm
John Anderson, Better! Cities & Towns
Big building. Complex Mechanical Systems. Lots of specialized details to make the exterior envelope keep the weather out. Condo Ownership. What could possibly go wrong?
Mon, Aug 24th 2015 3:44pm
Better! Cities & Towns
The large retail and commercial development in Altoona, called Prairie Crossing, has expanded even before construction on the project has started in earnest. Developer Heart of America Group from the Quad Cities said the project, which is adjacent to Bass Pro Shops and visible from Interstate 80, has grown into a 230-acre development with planned residential, retail and commercial components. Prairie Crossing has been in the works for several years and is the brainchild of Heart of America’s Mike Whalen. So far, a Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse — an HOA property — has opened in Prairie Crossing. Separate developers recently have begun construction on a 325,000-square-foot open-air outlet mall on 34 acres in the heart of the property.
Fri, Aug 21st 2015 2:59pm
Kaid Benfield, Better! Cities & Towns
The environment fares best when we marry superior design to superior locations, respecting the importance of both critical issues, and especially when we infuse the result with green buildings.
Wed, Aug 19th 2015 3:21pm
Kevin Klinkenberg, Better! Cities & Towns
After all the gruesome crashes, with countless little crosses lining the roadways, here’s what I’ve learned: We don’t really care. We don’t really care how many people die or are injured.
Wed, Aug 19th 2015 11:03am

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