Reconnecting America People * Places * Possibility

News: LRT Sales Tax Vote, Vegas Parking, LA LRT Junction Flaw, Lesson In Placemaking, Evaluating TOD Impact

Tracks News - In this section you'll find news from cities around the country as well as interviews and general reporting on issues.  It might be from a newspaper or a blog, but it counts as news.
TRANSPORT

Vancouver WA: C-Tran Putting LRT Measure to Voters

Columbian


The C-Tran Board of Directors on Tuesday finalized plans for a Nov. 6 sales tax ballot measure that would, in part, pay for the operation of a light rail extension into Vancouver, planned as part of the Columbia River Crossing project...

Read On

Las Vegas: Vibrant Downtown Depends on Less Parking

Las Vegas Weekly


If the average Las Vegan could rewrite the Bill of Rights, the new First Amendment would blend guns and 24-hour access to booze and video poker. And the new Second Amendment? Ample free parking...

Read On

Los Angeles: Possible Flaw in Expo Junction

Los Angeles Times


Local transit officials have run into complications trying to fix a junction on the recently opened Expo light-rail line, where experts said a serious track flaw presented a higher risk of train derailments...

Read On
URBANISM/HOUSING/CITIES

National: What to Do with 50K Closed Gas Stations

New York Times (via Better Cities and Towns)


The gas station in this Hudson Valley hamlet sat empty for years, leaching petroleum into the soil and well water. But a renovation that will transform the abandoned station into a yoga studio, wellness center and a charging station for electric cars has turned the eyesore into a symbol of this struggling community's revival...

Read On

Bay Area: Alameda Forced to Provide Multi-Family

Bay Citizen (via @sfcityscape) 


For the first time in nearly 40 years, the city of Alameda has zoned large swaths of land for apartment buildings. The City Council's vote paves the way for new affordable housing in the city, which residents have tried to block for decades...

Read On

International: Lesson in Stimulus, Placemaking

New York Times (via @anthonyflint) 


In headier times, Ciudad de la Luz was envisioned as a mega-movie studio "where fairy tales are made real." Its state-of-the-art wave-making machines could whip up a tsunami-style disaster in an enormous water tank facing the Mediterranean Sea, like a Hollywood on the Spanish Riviera. ..

Read On

Research: Evaluating Community Impact of TOD

TRB TRID


Transit-oriented development (TOD) is the development of compact, mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly land uses within walking distance of transit stations/stops. A major goal of TOD is to direct land development to where public transit and infrastructure already exist...

Read On

International: Hong Kong Now in China's Shadow

National Geographic


At the edge of the South China Sea, the metropolis of Hong Kong flickers and glows, its iconic skyscrapers like molten columns, the bay reflecting all the cool blues and fuchsias of the city's desire...

Read On

New York: Allowing Taller Towers Near Grand Central

Business Week


Development of skyscrapers taller than the Chrysler Building may be allowed near Manhattan's Grand Central Terminal under preliminary zoning plans presented by New York's Department of City Planning. ..

Read On

Atlanta: 3 Options for the Gulch Transit Hub 

Atlanta Journal Constitution


The gaping hole in Atlanta's patchwork downtown could be filled with verdant green space and new roads that surround a sprawling passenger terminal to serve a busy network of buses, rail and streetcars...

Read On

Pittsburgh: LRT Center Creates Development Buzz

Pittsburgh Post Gazette


Plans for a mixed-use building and parking garage near the Mt. Lebanon Light Transit Rail station are still in the early stages, but local leaders already are calling the project the major development opportunity for the municipality...

Read On

San Ramon: Urban Plan for Bishop Ranch Advances

Mercury News


An ambitious transit-oriented development plan for 295 acres around Bishop Ranch came one step closer to being a done deal Tuesday night. The City Council reached a consensus that the plan...

Read On

Research: Willingness to Pay for Residential Amenities

Journal of Regional Science (Abstract) 


We investigate the role of spatial multipliers when using spatial-lag hedonic models to measure the benefits of residential amenity improvements. Such benefits are commonly measured using the product of the coefficient of the amenity in question and a spatial multiplier. ..

Read On