“Solutions”

After perusing a few of my recent posts a reader asked, “So now that you’ve pointed out all the problems with this town, what are your solutions?” I could quote any number of people in response. Chuck Marohn from Strong Towns likes to say that when people ask for solutions what they’re really asking is, “What … Continue reading “Solutions”

Urban Triage

Triage is the process of prioritizing care in a resource constrained environment. The French first developed this technique on the battlefield when medics were overwhelmed and couldn’t provide sufficient help to every soldier who needed it. Triage separates the wounded into three groups: those who can be saved with immediate attention, those who are stable … Continue reading Urban Triage

Downward Mobility

When you’re inside a private suburban home with a gourmet kitchen, a formal dining room, five bedrooms, four baths, a bonus room above the three car garage, a backyard swimming pool… it’s pretty sweet. And when you climb into your car and hit the road at sixty miles an hour the freedom of mobility feels … Continue reading Downward Mobility

Big Box Urbanism

I’m ambivalent about big box stores. I occasionally shop at places like Walmart, Costco, and Target just like most people. I buy various packaged goods in bulk from these mega retailers to take advantage of a volume discount. I don’t moralize over these things. But when it comes to meat, dairy, and fresh produce I … Continue reading Big Box Urbanism

Why Do We Do This?

     I want you to take a long hard look at these photos. Where do you think they were taken? A refugee camp in Syria? The county animal control facility? A public housing project? A minimum security prison? Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo?      Google This is actually the premier high-end public high school in Quartz Hill, … Continue reading Why Do We Do This?

Two Sides of the Same Coin: Decline and Gentrification

      Two nights ago I attended a presentation at Mission Dolores Church sponsored by the San Francisco Chronicle called “A Changing Mission”. The discussion was based on a newspaper article and associated short film about the neighborhood. It’s well worth a quick look here.     Next week I’ll be in Lancaster, California to attend a similar … Continue reading Two Sides of the Same Coin: Decline and Gentrification