“Cities are the future of the human race, and Jeff Speck knows how to make them work.” —David Owen, staff writer at the New Yorker Nearly every US city would like to be more walkable—for reasons of health, wealth, and the environment—yet few are taking the proper steps to get there. The goals are often clear, but the path is seldom easy. Jeff Speck’s follow-up to his bestselling Walkable City is the resource that cities and citizens need to usher in an era of renewed street life. Walkable City Rules is a doer’s guide to making change in cities, and making it now. The 101 rules are practical yet engaging—worded for arguments at the planning commission, illustrated for clarity, and packed with specifications as well as data. For ease of use, the rules are grouped into 19 chapters that cover everything from selling walkability, to getting the parking right, escaping automobilism, making comfortable spaces and interesting places, and doing it now! Walkable City was written to inspire; Walkable City Rules was written to enable. It is the most comprehensive tool available for bringing the latest and most effective city-planning practices to bear in your community. The content and presentation make it a force multiplier for place-makers and change-makers everywhere.
How to Plan, Run, and Win the Fight for Effective Transit
Author: Steven Higashide
Imagine a bus system that is fast, frequent, and reliable--what would that change about your city? Buses can and should be the cornerstone of urban transportation. They offer affordable mobility and can connect citizens with every aspect of their lives. But in the US, they have long been an afterthought in budgeting and planning. Transit expert Steven Higashide uses real-world stories of reform to show us what a successful bus system looks like. Higashide explains how to marshal the public in support of better buses and argues that better bus systems will create better cities for all citizens. With a compelling narrative and actionable steps, Better Buses, Better Cities describes how decision-makers, philanthropists, activists, and public agency leaders can work together to make the bus a win in any city.
Jeff Speck has dedicated his career to determining what makes cities thrive. And he has boiled it down to one key factor: walkability. The very idea of a modern metropolis evokes visions of bustling sidewalks, vital mass transit, and a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly urban core. But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that's easy to drive to but often not worth arriving at. Making walkability happen is relatively easy and cheap; seeing exactly what needs to be done is the trick. In this essential new book, Speck reveals the invisible workings of the city, how simple decisions have cascading effects, and how we can all make the right choices for our communities. Bursting with sharp observations and real-world examples, giving key insight into what urban planners actually do and how places can and do change, Walkable City lays out a practical, necessary, and eminently achievable vision of how to make our normal American cities great again.
City Rules offers a challenge to students and professionals in urban planning, design, and policy to change the rules of city-building, using regulations to reinvigorate, rather than stifle, our communities. Emily Talen demonstrates that regulations are a primary detriment to the creation of a desirable urban form. While many contemporary codes encourage sprawl and even urban blight, that hasn't always been the case-and it shouldn't be in the future. Talen provides a visually rich history, showing how certain eras used rules to produce beautiful, walkable, and sustainable communities, while others created just the opposite. She makes complex regulations understandable, demystifying city rules like zoning and illustrating how written codes translate into real-world consequences. Most importantly, Talen proposes changes to these rules that will actually enhance communities' freedom to develop unique spaces.
A Story of Community and Public Life in Siena, Italy
Author: Thomas W. Paradis
It was May 2013 when Thomas Paradis convened in Siena, Italy, with a cohort of American faculty and students to lead a two-month inaugural study-abroad program. After a harrowing journey across the ocean, students and faculty alike soon realized that adapting to a foreign culture and language would be more challenging than they expected, especially amid one of the world’s more authentic community festivals—the Palio horse race. Paradis weaves witty stories of personal discovery with a crash course on Siena and its ferocious twice-yearly horse race. As the July 2 race and its related rituals draw closer, Paradis details how he and his wife uncovered the impressive local communities that underlie the life and blood of the age-old Palio in order to better understand what drives the passion of its residents. When the race finally begins, Paradis provides a compelling upfront view of the action and the race’s aftermath, pulling in the collective experiences of his students as their eyes and minds open to seeing the world in an entirely new way. Living the Palio shares an amusing and instructional romp through Siena, Italy, as university faculty members and their students gain self-confidence, patience, and most importantly, respect for a different way of life.
Questions of how to green the North American economy, create a green energy and transportation infrastructure, and halt the deadly increase in greenhouse gas buildup dominate our daily news. Related questions of how the design of cities can impact these challenges dominate the thoughts of urban planners and designers across the U.S. and Canada. With admirable clarity, Patrick Condon discusses transportation, housing equity, job distribution, economic development, and ecological systems issues and synthesizes his knowledge and research into a simple-to-understand set of urban design rules that can, if followed, help save the planet. No other book so clearly connects the form of our cities to their ecological, economic, and social consequences. No other book takes on this breadth of complex and contentious issues and distills them down to such convincing and practical solutions. And no other book so vividly compares and contrasts the differing experiences of U.S. and Canadian cities. Of particular new importance is how city form affects the production of planet-warming greenhouse gases. The author explains this relationship in an accessible way, and goes on to show how conforming to seven simple rules for community design could literally do a world of good. Each chapter in the book explains one rule in depth, adding a wealth of research to support each claim. If widely used, Condon argues, these rules would lead to a much more livable world for future generations—a world that is not unlike the better parts of our own.
Looking at major British cities, using Birmingham as a case study, this title explores Britain's intensely urban and increasingly global communities as interlocking pieces of a complex jigsaw, which are hard to see apart yet they are deeply unequal
Most Americans today do not live in discrete cities and towns, but rather in an aggregation of cities and suburbs that forms one basic economic, multi-cultural, environmental and civic entity. These "regional cities” have the potential to significantly improve the quality of our lives--to provide interconnected and diverse economic centers, transportation choices, and a variety of human-scale communities. In The Regional City, two of the most innovative thinkers in the field of land use planning and design offer a detailed look at this new metropolitan form and explain how regional-scale planning and design can help direct growth wisely and reverse current trends in land use. The authors: •discuss the nature and underpinnings of this new metropolitan form •present their view of the policies and physical design principles required for metropolitan areas to transform themselves into regional cities •document the combination of physical design and social and economic policies that are being used across the country •consider the main factors that are shaping metropolitan regions today, including the maturation of sprawling suburbs and the renewal of urban neighborhoods Featuring full-color graphics and in-depth case studies, The Regional City offers a thorough examination of the concept of regional planning along with examples of successful initiatives from around the country. It will be must reading for planners, architects, landscape architects, local officials, real estate developers, community development professionals, and for students in architecture, urban planning, and policy.