Density: Learning from Europe: It is indeed possible to have a city full of low-rise buildings that is still compact enough for excellent transit service—but only if most side streets are used for mid-rise buildings instead of houses.

By Michael Lewyn | July 3, 2018 A.Savin Wikimedia Commons Many urbanists, especially those who dislike tall buildings, are eager to point out that a city can have dense, transit-oriented development without having lots of tall buildings. And when I visited Europe last month, I saw some excellent examples of low-rise yet compact places. Most of central Paris, for example, is dominated by four- and five-story buildings, …

Kansas City boosts job access by 17% in one year through transit and 2.2 sq mile “smart area”. New York City leads on job access via transit, study says

By Jason Plautz, July 2, 2018, Smart City Dive Dive Brief: New York City has the highest job accessibility by transit, with 31% of the city’s commutes being made by transit, according to a new study from the Accessibility Observatory at the University of Minnesota. Kansas City, MO showed the greatest improvement in the annual survey, with a more than 17% increase in its transit …

Children are an “indicator species” of a healthy downtown

By David Roberts@drvoxdavid@vox.com  Jun 21, 2017Young families typically leave cities for the suburbs. Here’s how to keep them downtown. Urbanist Brent Toderian explains how Vancouver held onto its families. Elementary school and playground in downtown Vancouver. (Brent Toderian) In North America, we take it for granted: When couples have kids, they move out of the city to the suburbs. The trend has only …

Contribution accounting systems

A contribution accounting system is not a currency and not a barter system. It doesn’t refer to an exchange between individuals conducting joint work, whether picking cherries or on a project, or between them and another entity like a company. They are not getting paid a salary in exchange of their work. They are collaborating, they all add cherries into the same …

Shifting ownership from the 1% to the 99%: Initiative seeks for employee owned companies to be 20-25% of the workforce by 2050, adding security, recirculating money locally 3x more

By Fran Korten in Yes! Magazine, Oct 26, 2017 For decades Marjorie Kelly has looked for ways that businesses can better contribute to the good of society. In 1987, after getting a master’s degree in journalism, she founded Business Ethics magazine to showcase socially responsible corporations. But after 20 years as president and publisher, she sold the magazine. She had come to an …

Don’t Ask People What They Want, Watch What They Do: Design research is all about understanding who you’re building for and what their needs are

With design research, we seek to understand “What are the users’ behavioral patterns and motivations?” and then “How can we anticipate their needs, solve problems for them, and build the experience in a way that fits with their workflow, mental models, and usage patterns?” 7 Nov 2017 Nir and Far. Irene Au is a design partner at Khosla Ventures and former Head …

A manifesto for community development (or design thinking and process)

In time Jones turned away from the search for systematic design methods. He realized that academic attempts to systematize design led, in practice, to the separation of reason from intuition and failed to embody experience in the design process. Jones called for the re-introduction of personal judgement, imagination, and aesthetic sensibility into the design process. He came to believe in ‘reversing …