27 July 2016

Wish I could attend

For those interested in the intersection of health and place, this sounds like an outstanding conference. With the Baby Boomers reaching retirement age in the US and the UK, this is about to become a massive issue for designers to grapple with.

International conference on Habitats for Happy and Healthy Ageing |
Edinburgh | 11-14 October 2016 | Registration now OPEN

Mobility Mood and Place:
Habitats for Happy and Healthy Ageing Conference 

is delighted to announce that registration is
now open for the fourth Open Space: People Space Conference, ‘Mobility,
Mood and Place: Habitats for Happy and Healthy Ageing’.

The conference will take place in Edinburgh on 11th – 14th October 2016.

For further information and registration:

Featuring keynote speakers including Professor Billie Giles-Corti
(Australia), Professor Gloria Gutman (Canada) and Professor Sarah
Wigglesworth (UK), the conference will showcase the best global research
on realising environments for healthy, happy and active ageing for all.

As well as plenary, parallel and poster sessions, delegates will hear
from the Mobility, Mood and Place (MMP) project team who will share
emerging findings from three years of research engaging over 750 older
participants in innovative studies, including co-design, mobile neural
imaging and lifecourse work.

The final day will include site-based activities and workshops and an
exhibition on MMP will run for the duration.

Follow us on twitter: #OSPS4

25 July 2016

100 years of zoning

Today is the 100th anniversary of New York City's comprehensive zoning ordinance. Generally viewed as the first city-wide comprehensive zoning ordinance in the US, this was a real watershed moment for urban growth and land use controls. Appropriately, the NY Times provides some context and reflection in a Building Blocks column by David Dunlap.

It is probably true that the nation's embrace of zoning was inevitable, so if NYC hadn't jumped in first, someone else would have. But the symbolism of NYC's early adoption and continued rapid growth undercut many ridiculous arguments about how government control would set cities back or make them less competitive. As Dunlap reminds us, NYC also created a phenomenal zoning document that helped show other cities how to structure zoning as a defensible and logical system.

11 July 2016

Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go is embracing the geospatial realm and encouraging more walking. But could Pokemon Go cost you your job? I assume that the next few issues of planning and GIS trade mags will be sprinkled with interesting celebrations and complaints about this new trend, but will be sorely lacking in cheat codes.

06 July 2016

History maps

Mapping history has been around for a while. But I thought this series of maps from the Washington Post were very interesting. They asked where there were towns in the US named after towns in England. The maps, while simple, tell a story a bit different than I had expected.

05 July 2016

Good news for Barcelona

The City of Barcelona is banning Segways from the central portions of the city. They are considered part of the class of transportation that could be called "novelty urban transit". Like duck rides in Boston or beerbikes in Amsterdam, they ensure that tourists have a visible impact on the city they visit. In a cultural setting they are the equivalent of poor ecotourism.

Writing on The Atlantic CityLab Feargus O'Sullivan says, " It would surely be going too far to damn Segways as Satan’s chariots, but they still need to go. Barcelona’s waterfront should be an open-air living room for the city, not a place where the experience of the city is simulated for motorized, walkway-clogging tourist groups."