robertogreco + manhattan   24

Los Angeles, Houston and the appeal of the hard-to-read city
"This is not going to be a column about all the things the New York Times got wrong about the Los Angeles Times in its recent front-page story by Tim Arango and Adam Nagourney, "A Paper Tears Apart in a City That Never Quite Came Together." It is not, for the most part, going to be about all the things the New York Times got wrong (or simply failed to mention) about Los Angeles itself in that article, which argued that recent turmoil at this newspaper is emblematic of the city's broader lack of support for its major institutions. Plenty of smart people have already weighed in on both fronts.

And yes, every word in the previous sentence links to one of those smart people. Here are a couple more for good measure. When Josh Kun, Carolina Miranda, Daniel Hernandez, David Ulin, Alissa Walker, Matthew Kang and Carolyn Kellogg are united in knocking your analysis of Los Angeles, it might, you know, be a sign.

Anyway. This is going to be a column, instead, about something slightly different: about the legibility (and illegibility) of cities more generally. About how we react — as reporters and critics and simply as people — when we're confronted with a city that doesn't make sense to us right away.

Ten days or so before that story appeared, I spent a long weekend in Houston, meeting up with three old friends ostensibly to see the Warriors, the NBA team I grew up rooting for, play the Rockets — but also just to hang out and eat barbecue and visit the Menil, my favorite museum building in America (just edging out another Texas landmark, the Kimbell in Fort Worth).

Houston is casually written off even more often than Los Angeles, which is saying something. Now the fourth largest city in the country in population — and gaining on third-place Chicago — it's an unruly place in terms of its urbanism, a place that (as Los Angeles once did) has room, or makes room, for a wide spectrum of architectural production, from the innovative to the ugly. Like Los Angeles, it's a city that invested heavily in freeways and other car-centric infrastructure last century and remains, in many neighborhoods, a terrible place to walk.

It's long been a place people go to reinvent themselves, to get rich or to disappear. The flip side of its great tolerance is a certain lack of cohesion, a difficulty in articulating a set of common civic goals. (Here's where I concede that the instinct behind the New York Times piece on L.A., if little about its execution, was perfectly reasonable.) As is the case in Los Angeles, the greatest thing and the worst thing about Houston are one and the same: Nobody cares what anybody else is doing. Freedom in both places sometimes trumps community. It also tends to trump stale donor-class taste.

Roughly one in four residents of Houston's Harris County is foreign-born, a rate nearly as high as those in New York and Los Angeles. Houston's relationship with Dallas, the third biggest city in Texas, is something like L.A.'s with San Francisco; the southern city in each pair is less decorous, less fixed in its civic identity and (at the moment, at least) entirely more vital.

I've been to Houston five or six times; I like spending time there largely because I don't know it as well as I'd like to. That's another way of saying that while I'm there, I'm reminded of the way in which much of the world interacts with and judges Los Angeles, from a position of alienation and even ignorance. I just happen to enjoy that sensation more than most people do.

If I had to put my finger on what unites Houston and Los Angeles, it is a certain elusiveness as urban object. Both cities are opaque and hard to read. What is Houston? Where does it begin and end? Does it have a center? Does it need one? It's tough to say, even when you're there — even when you're looking directly at it.

The same has been said of Los Angeles since its earliest days. Something Carey McWilliams noted about L.A. in 1946 — that it is a place fundamentally ad hoc in spirit, "a gigantic improvisation" — is perhaps even more true of Houston. Before you can pin either city down, you notice that it's wriggled out of your grasp.

People who are accustomed to making quick sense of the world, to ordering it into neat and sharply defined categories, tend to be flummoxed by both places. And reporters at the New York Times are certainly used to making quick sense of the world. If there's one reason the paper keeps getting Los Angeles so spectacularly wrong, I think that's it. Smart, accomplished people don't like being made to feel out of their depth. Los Angeles makes out-of-town reporters feel out of their depth from their first day here.

Their reaction to that feeling, paradoxically enough, is very often to attempt to write that feeling away — to conquer that sense of dislocation by producing a story that sets out to explain Los Angeles in its entirety. Because it's a challenge, maybe, or because they simply can't be convinced, despite all the evidence right in front of them, that Los Angeles, as cities go, is an especially tough nut to crack.

Plenty of journalists have left Los Angeles over the years and moved to New York to work for the New York Times; none of them, as far as I know, has attempted, after two or three months on the job, to write a piece explaining What New York City Means. I can think of many New Yorkers — each of them highly credentialed academically or journalistically or both, which is perhaps the root of the problem — who have come to Los Angeles and tried to pull off that same trick here.

That tendency — to attempt the moon shot, the overarching analysis, too soon — is equal parts hubris and panic. It usually goes about as well as it went this time around for Arango, not incidentally a brand-new arrival in the New York Times bureau here, and Nagourney.

Among the most dedicated scholars of Houston's urban form in recent years has been Lars Lerup, former dean of the Rice University School of Architecture. In his new book of essays, "The Continuous City," he argues that the first step in understanding Houston and cities like it is to begin with a certain humility about the nature and scale of the task.

This kind of city has grown so large — in economic and environmental as well as physical reach — that it begins to stretch beyond our field of vision. The best way to grasp it, according to Lerup, is to understand that it is not Manhattan, Boston, San Francisco or Chicago — to recognize it instead as "a vast field with no distinct borders."

"The old city was a discrete object sitting on a Tuscan hill surrounded by a collectively constructed wall; the new city is everywhere," he writes. "Only when we accept that we can only attain a partial understanding can work begin."

Lerup stresses that huge, spread-out cities like Houston — which he also calls "distributed cities," places where "the spiky downtown is just a blip in the flatness" — have long been tough to read, in part because they are "always in the throes of change." But the relationship between urbanization and climate change has added a new layer of complexity, because big metro regions and their pollution are exacerbating the ecological crisis. The city now "owns everything" and must answer for everything, "even the raging hurricane bearing down on its coast." The vast city has grown vaster still.

If there's one place I part ways with Lerup, it has to do with his insistence that "few conceptual tools have evolved" to help us grapple with the distributed city and its meanings. At least in the case of Los Angeles, the literature on this score is richer, going back many decades, than even many locals realize.

There's not only McWilliams' superb, clear-eyed book "Southern California: An Island on the Land," which I would make required reading for every new hire if I were running the Los Angeles bureau of the New York Times. (Especially the part where McWilliams admits that he hated Los Angeles when he arrived and that it took him "seven long years of exile" to understand and appreciate the city. Seven years! And that was with a brain bigger and more nimble than most.) There's also architect Charles Moore's 1984 guidebook, "City Observed: Los Angeles," which he wrote with Peter Becker and Regula Campbell.

Right at the beginning, Moore, as if to anticipate Lerup, reminds his readers that L.A. is "altogether different from the compact old centers of Manhattan and Boston." (It is not a discrete object sitting on a Tuscan hill.) Making sense of it, as a result, requires "an altogether different plan of attack."

That simple bit of advice is the only one journalists newly arrived in Los Angeles really need to get started on the right foot. It's also one those journalists have been ignoring for 34 years and counting."
houston  losangeles  cities  illegibility  vitality  urban  urbanism  nyc  christopherhawthorne  2018  socal  california  larlerup  manhattan  boston  sanfrancisco  chicago  nytimes  careymcwilliams  joshkun  carolinamiranda  danielhernandez  davidulin  latimes  alissawalker  matthewkang  carolynkellogg  timarango  adamnagourney  elitism  legibility  population  place  identity  elusiveness  hubris  panic  urbanization  climatechange  complexity  charlesmoore 
february 2018 by robertogreco
- Wonderful passage on NYC #centralpark designer,...
"Wonderful passage on NYC #centralpark designer, Frederick Law Olmsted’s views on nature in #rebeccasolnit’s book, #savagedreams. Olmsted viewed nature as part of society, whereas #henrydavidthoreau saw nature as a refuge from society. This very split epitomizes how the West conceives of what is “natural.” Solnit argues that people like Thoreau and Muir fetishized a form of nature that was pure and that it was waiting there to be discovered by the white man, which allowed them to believe their own narrative that they were the “first”. Olmsted conceives access to nature as a universal right and that it is not a first come first serve situation. I’ve been thinking about what is considered natural after watching #themartian when Matt Damon proudly says that he is the first to “colonize” Mars. What enabled the writers to use that word without any sense of the historical savagery associated with it? NASA is at once a symbol of scientific advancement and also a symbol of a Thoreau-esque view of nature - apart from us, to be discovered, and conquered. Whereas previous colonizers had to deal with human residents in Africa, North America, South America, Caribbeans, space colonizers don’t have to deal any life, making this the most ideal colonial experience.

#triciainreading thanks @hautepop for your pic that spurred me to pull out solnit’s book again!"

[on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/_4Q_zQt8OT/ ]
triciawand  rebeccasolnit  thoreau  fredericklawolmstead  johnmuir  landscape  naure  society  purity  socialengineering  space  openspace  publicspace  cities  urban  urbanism  centralpark  nyc  manhattan  culture  experience  earthmoving  refuge  solitude 
december 2015 by robertogreco
British developers rushing to copy New York should be wary of its mistakes | Feargus O’Sullivan | Comment is free | The Guardian
"Then there’s the High Line, Manhattan’s park on top of a former elevated goods railway. Ending in the Meatpacking District, there’s no denying the walkway’s beauty and popularity with tourists (or the fact that it has sent local property values skyrocketing). Its arrival nonetheless reflects an ugly shift in New York’s priorities. The High Line arrived just as the city’s contribution to the running costs of the parks where tourists never venture fell through the floor. It created a template where a park could only attract attention and funding if it was an agent of urban transformation (and often displacement) rather than an everyday space for ordinary citizens’ recreation.

As David J Madden, of the London School of Economics, put it to me: “In New York, public parks and other urban resources are languishing due to strained public finances, while private money dictates the location and character of a few lavishly funded projects. So if the goal is creating a democratic city that serves everyone, the High Line isn’t the solution, it’s part of the problem.”"
highline  economics  manhattan  nyc  2015  davidmadden  privatization  publicfinance  inequality  democracy 
may 2015 by robertogreco
NYC Haunts | Online Leadership Program
"Global Kids has formed a partnership with The New York Public Library to start the NYC Haunts program. NYC Haunts is a program funded by the Hive NYC Learning Network in which students from the Bronx, Staten Island and Manhattan design and create location-based games using mobile technology and the ARIS platform. In NYC Haunts, the player takes on the role of a ghost detective who encounters the local residents who haunt the community until their issues can be resolved. The games are designed to be played in and around city libraries and will teach its players about the library collection, local history and global issues."
nypl  nyc  youth  globalkids  location  location-based  games  gaming  aris  mobile  manhattan  statenisland  bronx  projectideas  openstudioproject  nychaunts 
october 2013 by robertogreco
From Here to There | the art of asking for directions | Spoon & Tamago
Outfitted in a souvenir baseball cap and Century 21 shopping bag, Japanese artist Nobutaka Aozaki hits the streets of Manhattan, asking strangers for directions wherever he goes. However, Aozaki is not a tourist nor does he have a horrible sense of direction. This is “From Here to There,” an ongoing art piece in which Aozaki is constructing a map of Manhattan based on hand-drawn directions people create for him.

“Sometimes my destinations come from Japanese guide books but other times they’re just where I’m headed to meet friends or, if I’m hungry, to get a bite to eat,” Aozaki tells us. The NY-based artist isn’t necessarily trying to complete the map. What’s more important is that the artistic process reflects his daily life; almost like a diary.
maps  mapping  art  nobutakaaozaki  2013  nyc  manhattan  directions  handdrawnmaps  wayfinding  ncmideas  via:tealtan 
august 2013 by robertogreco
Hive NYC Learning Network
[From the about page, which also includes a great directory of organizations.]

"Hive NYC Learning Network is a Mozilla project that was founded through The MacArthur Foundation’s Digital Media and Learning initiative to fuel collaborations between cultural organizations to create new learning pathways and innovative education practices together. Hive NYC is composed of fifty-six non-profit organizations—museums, libraries, after-school clubs and informal learning spaces—that create Connected Learning opportunities for youth. Network members have access to funding to support this work through The Hive Digital Media Learning Fund in The New York Community Trust.

Core Beliefs:
• School is not the sole provider in a community’s educational system
• Youth need to be both sophisticated consumers and active producers of digital media
• Learning should be driven by youth’s interests
• Digital media and technology are the glue and amplifier for connected learning experiences
• Out-of-school time spaces are fertile grounds for learning innovation
• Organizations must collaborate to thrive

Hive NYC operates as a city-based learning lab, where members network with each other, share best practices and pedagogies, learn about and play with new technologies, participate in events, and most importantly, collaborate to create learning opportunities for NYC youth. As part of the network, members have access to the following support and services:

• Strategic guidance in seeking funding through the Hive Digital Media Learning Fund in the New York Community Trust
• Brokered connections between member organizations based on shared ideas and potential programs
• Participation in events in and beyond New York City that illustrate the work of network members and promote Connected Learning principles, digital literacy AND webmaking skills
• Access to involvement with the NYC Department of Education and others seeking to build experimental and/or sustainable partnerships with Hive NYC
• Opportunity to promote new, programs and events through Hive NYC communications channels (blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc.), as well as youth and volunteer recruitment
• A knowledge exchange for members to share models, ideas, content, tools and best-practices with each other
• Professional Development sessions that develop staff through network peer mentoring, modeling and sharing
• Monthly, in-person meet-ups and conference calls that allow for members to share program updates, best practices, and learn about new opportunities
• Additional seed funding for technology development, research, etc.

Each year, more than 6,000 tweens and teens across NYC directly engage with Hive NYC. These youth take part in projects funded by the Hive Digital Media Learning Fund in The New York Community Trust, private and community events, and programs resulting from network partnerships. Another 330,000 youth are indirectly impacted by these efforts, and through the broad dissemination of innovations and programs developed within the network."

[See also: http://hiveresearchlab.org/ ]
nyc  hivenyclearning  mozilla  informallearning  self-directed  self-directedlearning  unschooling  deschooling  learning  youth  openstudioproject  lcproject  macarthurfoundation  homago  museums  ncmideas  afterschool  clubs  learningspaces  funding  professionaldevelopment  bestpractices  digitalliteracy  networkedlearning  networks  collaboration  digitalmedia  newmedia  technology  interestdriven  amnh  bankstreetcollege  beamcenter  brooklynmuseum  brooklynpubliclibrary  carnegiehall  centerforurbanpedagogy  citylore  children'smuseumofthearts  coderjojo  dreamyard  exposurecamp  eyebeam  facinghistoryandourselves  glovbalkids  grilswritenow  maketheroad  thelamp  nycsalt  parsons  reelworks  wagnercollege  worldup  wnyc  wnycradiorookies  urbanword  toked  thepoint  rubinmuseum  momi  nypl  moma  iridescentlearning  habitatmap  cooper-hewitt  commonsensemedia  brooklyn  bronx  manhattan  groundswell  mouse  downtowncommunitytelevision  globalactionproject  globalkids  instituteofplay  joanganzcooneycenter  people'sproductionhouse  radiorookies  stoked  queens  statenisland 
july 2013 by robertogreco
BLDGBLOG: Spacesuit: An Interview with Nicholas de Monchaux
"I was looking for a way to discuss the essential lessons of complexity and emergence—which, even in 2003, were pretty unfamiliar words in the context of design—and I hit upon this research on the spacesuit as the one thing I’d done that could encapsulate the potential lessons of those ideas, both for scientists and for designers. The book really was a melding of these two things."

"But then the actual spacesuit—this 21-layered messy assemblage made by a bra company, using hand-stitched couture techniques—is kind of an anti-hero. It’s much more embarrassing, of course—it’s made by people who make women’s underwear—but, then, it’s also much more urbane. It’s a complex, multilayered assemblage that actually recapitulates the messy logic of our own bodies, rather than present us with the singular ideal of a cyborg or the hard, one-piece, military-industrial suits against which the Playtex suit was always competing.

The spacesuit, in the end, is an object that crystallizes a lot of ideas about who we are and what the nature of the human body may be—but, then, crucially, it’s also an object in which many centuries of ideas about the relationship of our bodies to technology are reflected."

"The same individuals and organizations who were presuming to engineer the internal climate of the body and create the figure of the cyborg were the same institutions who, in the same context of the 1960s, were proposing major efforts in climate-modification.

Embedded in both of those ideas is the notion that we can reduce a complex, emergent system—whether it’s the body or the planet or something closer to the scale of the city—to a series of cybernetically inflected inputs, outputs, and controls. As Edward Teller remarked in the context of his own climate-engineering proposals, “to give the earth a thermostat.”"

"most attempts to cybernetically optimize urban systems were spectacular failures, from which very few lessons seem to have been learned"

"architecture can be informed by technology and, at the same time, avoid what I view as the dead-end of an algorithmically inflected formalism from which many of the, to my mind, less convincing examples of contemporary practice have emerged"

"connections…between the early writing of Jane Jacobs…and the early research done in the 1950s and 60s on complexity and emergence under the aegis of the Rockefeller Foundation"

"Geoffrey West and Luis Bettencourt—who have gone a long way in showing that, not only should cities be viewed through the analogical lens of complex natural systems, but, in fact, some of the mathematics—in particular, to do with scaling laws, the consumption of resources, and the production of innovation by cities—proves itself far more susceptible to analyses that have come out of biology than, say, conventional economics."
militaryindustrialcomplex  tools  cad  gis  luisbettencourt  janejacobs  meatropolis  manhattan  meat  property  fakestates  alancolquhoun  lizdiller  cyberneticurbanism  glenswanson  parametricarchitecture  parametricurbanism  interstitialspaces  urbanism  urban  bernardshriever  simonramo  neilsheehan  jayforrester  housing  hud  huberthumphrey  vitruvius  naca  smartcities  nyc  joeflood  husseinchalayan  cushicle  michaelwebb  spacerace  buildings  scuba  diving  1960s  fantasticvoyage  adromedastrain  quarantine  systemsthinking  matta-clark  edwardteller  climatecontrol  earth  exploration  spacetravel  terraforming  humanbody  bodies  cyborgs  travel  mongolfier  wileypost  management  planning  robertmoses  cybernetics  materials  fabric  2003  stewartbrand  jamescrick  apollo  complexitytheory  complexity  studioone  geoffreywest  cities  research  clothing  glvo  wearables  christiandior  playtex  interviews  technology  history  design  science  fashion  nasa  books  spacesuits  architecture  space  bldgblog  geoffmanaugh  2012  nicholasdemonchaux  wearable  elizabethdiller  interstitial  bod  from delicious
november 2012 by robertogreco
Xi'an Famous Foods - Liang Pi Cold Noodles, Lamb & Pork Burgers - Flushing/Chinatown/East Village NYC
"Xi'an Famous Foods does not serve the typical Chinese food, just as Xi'an is not the typical Chinese city. Situated in the western region of China rich in history, the ancient city of Xi'an is known as the first capital of China, and the resting place of the famous terra cotta soldiers. Having once been the starting point of the Silk Road, Xi'an celebrates its diversity and boasts a unique cuisine that may be best described as a fusion of Middle Eastern and Chinese foods."

[Ate at the Flushing location with Sebastien Marion. We had "[N1] Spicy Cumin Lamb Hand-Ripped Noodles." So good.]
chinatown  restaurants  manhattan  queens  flushing  nyc  chinese  food  xianfamousfoods  from delicious
november 2012 by robertogreco
matthew gallaway - A Few Notes On Overgentrification
"The piece also fails to address the problems that really afflict neighborhoods in NYC and elsewhere around the world undergoing similar transformations. In West Chelsea, the problem is clearly not the High Line, but rather the effects of an unfettered system — at local and federal levels — that has allowed an arguably unprecedented concentration of wealth in our country, which (yes) makes it all but impossible for those without millions of dollars to afford to live (or at least buy) in those neighborhoods now being populated by those who have — let’s just call it — too much money. At the same time, however, the solution is not to stop the development of parks or to whine about gas-station/auto-shop leases not being renewed; the solution is rather (and this is hardly revolutionary or at least revelatory) to tax the rich, both individuals and corporations, and to distribute the money to the less-than-rich, in ways that are reasonably fair and equitable. That’s what government is for…"
society  urbanplanning  wealthdistribution  policy  taxes  us  wealth  highline  manhattan  brooklyn  nyc  2012  gentrification  from delicious
august 2012 by robertogreco
MoMA | Talk to Me BETA | prettymaps, Beijing, Manhattan, and Tokyo
"Polymaps, Mapnik, and TileStache software

prettymaps are interactive maps that integrate data from freely available sources into multidimensional renderings of different places. The application pulls geographic data from open-mapping projects—including street-level data from OpenStreetMap, land-formation data from Natural Earth, and place-specific data from Flickr—and plots them atop one another. Users can view the maps at varying degrees of detail, zooming from a view of the world to a view of a single neighborhood. They are visually striking, with cities transformed into colorful abstractions, but the shapes are recognizable for anyone already familiar with the terrain."
prettymaps  maps  mapping  beijing  manhattan  nyc  moma  tokyo  polymaps  mapnik  tilestache  cities  2011  talktome  aaronstraupcope  from delicious
july 2011 by robertogreco
Robot Flâneur: Exploring Google Street View
"Robot Flâneur is an explorer for Google Street View. Select a city to start exploring.

Follow the instructions or just go full screen for an urban screensaver of your choice."
photography  cities  urban  maps  mapping  jamesbridle  robotflaneur  london  sanfrancisco  manhattan  nyc  sãopaulo  paris  johannesburg  tokyo  mexicodf  df  berlin  exploration  screensavers  mexicocity  from delicious
june 2011 by robertogreco
Kevin Slavin on Lift 11: Geneva - live streaming video powered by Livestream
Quotes transcribed by David Smith: "things we write but can no longer read"; "three problems … opacity, inscrutability … The third one is darker and a little bit harder to describe — I don't even know what to call it yet"; flash crash; dark pools; 60% of all movies rented on Netflix are rented because Netflix recommended them; 70% of current Wall St trades are algorithms trying to be invisible or other algorithms trying to find the invisible algorithms"
kevinslavin  technology  algorithms  evolution  wallstreet  cities  darkpools  netflix  trading  finance  invisibilealgorithms  financialservices  realestate  nyc  manhattan  songs  film  television  tv  opacity  inscrutability  elevators  lift11  roomba  robots  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
City As School - Wikipedia
"City-As-School is a alternative NYC public high school built on the idea that all children learn differently, some learn by seeing, some by hearing, others by doing. The school's stated objective is to help strengthen, motivate & guide students through their high school experience.

While students have many opportunities for in-house classes, experiential learning is the foundation of CAS. Students are required to register for an internship each cycle; a cycle is half the time of a regular semester. Currently, CAS has over 500 open internship relationships.

Graduation from CAS is through a portfolio presentation before a panel of adult and peers.

Some of CAS students are eligible to take classes at local colleges tuition free."
education  schools  nyc  alternative  alternativeeducation  lcproject  internships  jean-michelbasquiat  basquiat  mosdef  adamhorovitz  learning  city-as-school  brooklyn  manhattan  ricksafran  fredkoury  publicschools  experiential  from delicious
december 2010 by robertogreco
Manhattan Free School
"The Manhattan Free School is an independent school for people from ages 5-18. Our school’s fundamental premise is based on the resolution constructed and adopted at the 2005 International Democratic Education Conference, which states:

In any educational setting, young people have the right:

* to decide individually how, when, what, where, and with whom they learn,

* to have an equal share in the decision-making as to how their organizations—in particular their schools—are run, and which rules and sanctions, if any, are necessary. We believe people are born curious and because of this we can trust in their desire to learn and their enormous capacity to make sense of the world on their own terms."
alternative  democratic  education  sudburyschools  summerhill  nyc  unschooling  teaching  schools  freeschools  lcproject  deschooling  manhattan  manhattanfreeschool  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
Big City - East Harlem School Helps Students Find Passions - NYTimes.com
"If the popular Reggio Emilia approach to preschool — which empowers the students to drive the curriculum and relies heavily on art — continued to older grades, it might look a little like the Manhattan Free School."
education  alternative  learning  schools  lcproject  freeschools  manhattan  manhattanfreeschool  nyc  unschooling  deschooling  reggioemilia  schooling  democratic  tcsnmy  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
The Man Who Could Unsnarl Manhattan Traffic | Magazine
"Kheel hoped that Komanoff’s work would support a plan to offer completely free public transit. But Komanoff found that the system would still be overloaded at rush hour. Drivers had to be encouraged to travel at different times of the day. So he devised a new plan, one that charged both drivers and transit riders different rates at different times. ... Buses are always free, because the time saved when passengers aren’t fumbling for change more than makes up for the lost fare revenue. ...

Komanoff’s plan is vastly more sophisticated than a simple bridge toll. Instead of merely punishing drivers, he has built a delicate system of incentives and revenue streams. Just as a musical fugue weaves several melodic lines into a complex yet harmonious whole, Komanoff’s policy assembles all the various modes of transportation into a coherent, integrated traffic system.""

[via: http://kottke.org/10/05/taming-manhattans-traffic ]
architecture  cities  cars  manhattan  nyc  statistics  traffic  transit  transport  economics  data  transportation  excel  energy  complexity  subways  math  urban  taxis  buses  chaleskomanoff 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Todo cabe en una cajita… | Ciudad Posible
"Esta imagen...muestra las áreas construidas de Atlanta y Barcelona (1990). Ambas urbes están representadas a la misma escala, y tienen aproximadamente la misma población. Sin embargo el contraste en su manera de utilizar el suelo es increíble: resulta que podrían caber 26 Barcelonas en el área que hoy ocupa Atlanta.

Esta otra imagen muestra la superficie ocupada por la ciudad de Phoenix, Arizona (2002). Como pueden ver, dentro de ella podrían caber Roma, San Francisco, Paris, toda la isla de Manhattan… y aún así sobraría espacio.

El estilo de vida posible en cada una de estas ciudades es radicalmente distinto. En Phoenix manejas, en Paris caminas. En Atlanta puedes vivir en barrios socialmente homogéneos, mientras que en Barcelona es imposible dejar de percibir la diversidad existente. La población de los dos tipos de ciudades aquí mostradas tienen relativamente el mismo nivel de ingresos, pero vivir en una ciudad desparramada no se parece nada a vivir en una ciudad compacta."
paris  barcelona  atlanta  phoenix  sprawl  cities  urban  suburban  density  diversity  urbanism  nyc  manhattan  rome  sanfrancisco  sunbelt 
february 2010 by robertogreco
Near Future Laboratory » Urban Historical Infrastructure Layers
"Three curious examples of a kind of infrastructural sedimentation, found in New York City and Brooklyn. The first one shows a broken portion of a (ugly) sign that had been placed over the original art deco style lettering on a behemoth post office. The next is a (ugly) fancy condominium module that has been plopped on top of an old light industrial / warehouse building in the now Tony / over-the-top section of Brooklyn’s “DUMBO” (down underneath the manhattan bridge overpass) section. Finally, The Highline, a new urban park that was found within an old abandoned stretch of train track that sits one story above ground, along the westside of Manhattan, around Chelsea-ish."
julianbleecker  nyc  brooklyn  manhattan  urban  infrastructure  parks  public  urbanism  highline  history  layering 
june 2009 by robertogreco
Marginal Revolution: How to travel in the U.S.
A reader asks: "I was wondering whether you have similar advice for traveling in the US? If someone who has never previously visited the US asked you for five places they should visit in the US, what would be your advice? Or perhaps more generally, what should they look for in their destinations? Assume they're driving, and budget isn't an issue, and that it's not a requirement to see the most popular tourist spots. What's the best advice to properly see and experience the US, in all its diversity?" Tyler Cowen responds: "Most of all, drive as much as possible and do not shy away from a few days in the "boring" (yet wondrous) suburbs. After that, here is my list of five: 1. Manhattan 2. Detroit and the Ford Rouge plant in Dearborn 3. Memphis and the Mississippi Delta 4. San Francisco 5. Grand Canyon and southern Utah"

[... follows with discussion of possible swaps & top ten cities. I'm guessing Kottke will point to this/ask on his own blog, comments will get even more interesting.]
us  travel  tylercowen  advice  foreuropeans  nyc  manhattan  detroit  memphis  texas  sanfrancisco  boston  miami  neworleans  chicago  nola 
february 2009 by robertogreco
Marie Lorenz
"My work combines psycho-geographic exploration (most prevalent in my ongoing project ‘The Tide and Current Taxi’) with highly crafted, material work (drawing,printmaking, and installation in visually based narratives). I use boats and navigation in my artwork to create an uncertain space. My belief is that uncertainty brings about a heightened awareness of place. When we feel unstable we see more. In my very first boat projects in the canals around Providence, Rhode Island, I was struck by the perspective that navigating a city waterway allows. We see the city from below street level. The people and cars are gone. The city seems empty and it allows an unusual encounter with architecture and structure."
psychogeography  geography  glvo  art  artists  boats  nyc  manhattan  community  water  taxi  sculpture  installation  landscape 
december 2008 by robertogreco
Gel Videos - Marie Lorenz
"Marie runs the Tide and Current Taxi, which takes passengers on a boat (that she hand-built) on voyages on New York City's East River ... with no planned destination. Her work touches on design, art, and community, which helped make it one of the most popular presentations at Gel '07."
art  video  marielorenz  glvo  gel  boats  nyc  manhattan  design  travel  psychogeography  geography 
december 2008 by robertogreco
Move Up? Out? Manhattan Families Squeeze In - NYTimes.com
"Although the poor are most often associated with crowded living conditions, upper-middle-class professionals like Dr. Shaw and Ms. Avery are increasingly choosing to live in a small apartment in Manhattan because they cannot afford to upgrade to a two-bedroom and they do not want to move to the suburbs.

By the standards of a single New Yorker, theirs is a big apartment, with the bedroom accommodating a queen-size bed, a crib, a toddler bed and a dresser. But most Americans would not consider a one-bedroom apartment adequate for a family of four."
small  homes  living  families  parenting  manhattan  nyc  space  housing  cv 
october 2008 by robertogreco

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