06 July 2015

Terrible, terrible news

At a time when there is lots of bad news, this is one of the worst local bad news stories. Ugh.

Hallowed ground for landscape architects

More than 25 years ago I learned about Generalife and the Alhambra in one of my first college classes and I finally got to visit it this summer. While it was well worth the wait, I gather that if I had gone earlier, there would have been fewer rope barriers in spaces like the Court of Lions. But the restoration work would also not yet have improved some sections.

Not only is this a UNESCO World Heritage site, but it is also on the short list of greatest landscapes anywhere.

30 June 2015

28 June 2015

Its no fun

An New Zealander  has posted a personal story on Vox.com that emphasizes the unintentional complexity of the immigration system. William Han writes that he has been here strictly legally for 15 years, while acquiring 2 Ivy League degrees, but still found the system too dense for the US to allow this talented resource to remain in the country. If you doubt his talent, just read the excellently told story.

Much of the story revolves around Han's status as the holder of an H1-B visa. I learned a little more about these a few years ago as part of a research team working on the Eagleton Institute's RIIM project. As part of the project we mapped out where the H1-B employers in New Jersey are (almost everywhere) and where the the heaviest users are (the Northeast Corridor). But as Han raised questions about how H1-B workers are treated, I realized the this map might also be a map of posible employer abuses in New Jersey. Check out the entire report, “Meet the Neighbors: Organizational and Spatial Dynamics of Immigrant New Jersey.”

22 June 2015

Water woes

The Washington Post recently published a revealing article on the water crisis in California that suggests this might be harder to fix than some first expected.

h/t JohnB

12 June 2015

NPS tries new approaches

According to the NYTimes, the National Park Service is enhancing the park experiences with more social media, new phone apps, and digital mapping. This should make for an interesting conversation in our Byrne Seminar on National Parks and information this fall.

09 June 2015

Vodka and planning

I don't remember ever reading about a town with Vodka money problems before.  Otherwise it seems like a classic rural development/gentrification conflict. But I think we will see more of these single investor gentrification issues in the future. #LonerGentrifiation

05 June 2015