WIN WEEK – Planning Hero

Understanding past-mistakes is essential to avoiding them in the future, however, hindsight is 20/20 and we here at Planning Pool are cognizant of this truth. With that in mind and with eyes toward sunnier days, we’ve decided to respond to last month’s Fail Week feature with some of the more hopeful developments in the world of planning: Win Week…

Using Social Media to Make Transit Fun!

Around North America and Europe, a whole lot of energy is being invested in using social media to improve communication between transit agencies and the people who rely on their services. An impressive and ever-growing array of agency-created and privately-produced iPhone and iPod Touch apps disseminate information about transit schedules, service updates and even real-time bus and train locations.

The US-based website CityGoRound helps people to find local transit, biking, walking and driving applications. Advancing its overall goal of making sustainable transportation more convenient, CityGoRound also actively encourages transit agencies to make their data public.

Just as users can access information about transit services, transit providers also can take advantage of social media to gather data from their users. For instance, as discussed in this PlanningPool post, … Continue Reading

Weekly Video: Urban Renewal Touch Table

The following was presented as part of the final review of the European Union’s four-year IPCity Project, which focuses on the growing interface between technology and city development… Read more

Eco-Communities: Designing a Sustainable Future – Globe 2010

“Don’t build new residences, only rebuild the old”, argues Liesbeth van der Pol, Chief Government Architect of the Netherlands, who has helped revitalize the nation’s neighbourhoods. Buildings are significant consumers of energy and major contributors to global green-house gas emissions. A panel at Globe 2010 explored how “cities and communities can become more sustainable through better planning, integrated developments, and the design of resource-efficient, high performance buildings.”

Like almost all cities around the world, Amsterdam is struggling with urban sprawl; the city has the same number of residents as 1920s, but the city uses four times more space. van der Pol warns that if this trend continues, there won’t be much interconnected green spaces by 2050. The solution, van der Pol argues, is low rise, high density city buildings, saying that “Europe still has a chance to choose between … Continue Reading

After COP15 Disappointment, Business Needs to ‘Just Get On With It’ – Globe 2010

The business community needs to ‘just get on with it’, and not wait for carbon emissions reduction policy and government to catch up, says a panel of international business leaders. This is especially true coming out of the COP15 global climate dialogues in Copenhagen last year, which failed to produce a fair, ambitious and binding agreement. Implications of the uneven and uninspired global regulatory climate for the business community were discussed by a Globe 2010 international panel of business representatives who are demonstrating sustainability leadership.

Panelists agreed that business are the actors who will deliver carbon reductions. Daniel Hendrix, President & CEO of the sustainable carpet company Interface, called out industry as the “one got us into the problem so industry needs to get us out of it.” Hendrix also pointed to the worlds’ top 50 companies as … Continue Reading

Globe 2010 Opening Plenary Hopeful and Disappointing

It’s hopeful that 10,000 business people are gathered from around the globe to discuss and create opportunities for a greener economy at the Globe 2010 conference. Amazing actually, when you consider that the world wide economic slump could have caused the risk-averse business scene to shirk away from the imperative to consider the environment in their operations.

However, a number of messages in Globe 2010’s opening plenary were also supremely disappointing. First, sustainability is a feature – not a focus – of business. Granted, GE Energy is has just spent $5 billion and will invest another $10 billion more over five years in research and development of its eco-portfolio. The language used to describe this effort shows a segregated understanding of the role of sustainability. James Suciu, GE Energy’s President of Global Sales & Marketing, described the need to provide, … Continue Reading

Planning Pool Original: Northeast Portland Tool Library

In January, Daniella shared how she and some colleagues incorporated a tool library into concept designs for the Britannia Community Centre. To follow up, we visited the Northeast Portland Tool Library for our latest Planning Pool Original. Read more…

Northeast Portland Tool Library from Planning Pool on Vimeo.

Weekly Video: ‘Mistake by the Lake’

This week’s video from John Stossel’s show on one of the Fox News networks features analysis from a decidedly libertarian panel on the failures of urban planning in Cleveland, Ohio — otherwise known as the ‘Mistake by the Lake’… Read More

LiveBlogging this week: Globe 2010 in Vancouver!

This week, Vancouver will be host to the world’s largest event dedicated to the business of the environment. Globe 2010 will bring together over 10,000 professionals from more than 70 countries, “for three days of thought-leading sessions presented by world-renowned sustainability experts; to survey leading-edge environmental innovations; and to participate in unparalleled global networking opportunities.”

Held March 24-26 at the Vancouver Convention Centre, Planning Pool will cover some key sessions at Globe 2010 including:

  • Opening plenary
  • Eco Communities: Designing a Sustainable Future
  • Ministerial Dialogue on Sustainability

Globe 2010 has four sub themes to its programming: clean technology, water, sustainable retail, and the future of the auto industry. Check out the full program schedule for more information.

For fans of CBC’s business competition television program, Dragon’s Den, auditions for the upcoming sixth season will happen as … Continue Reading

Weekly Video

Concrete, wires, and engineering aside, the essence of a working street exists in its people. Planners are not oblivious to this fact, however capturing the thoughts and personalities that define a place is not always easily accomplished… Read More

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