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Our PARK(ing) Day installation was a rousing success.  What was once a dearth of human interaction sprouted into a buzzing public park for the day.  Imagine if this one day turned into a week, months, years.  A much better use of our shared public space.  For more, read our parking treatise here.

PARK(ing) Day 2009Chicago contains roughly 8,000 miles of surface roads, amounting to 77,575 acres of pavement dedicated to the driving and parking of automobiles.  Automotive real estates further balloons when you consider the private parking lots, garages, and alleys.  Comparatively, Chicago dedicates 7,300 acres to public parks.

The streets of Chicago are typically inhospitable to anything but cars, choking out pedestrians, funneling stormwater runoff to inappropriate locations, contributing to air pollution, and obstructing a genial atmosphere amongst the users.

Imagine the possibilities if streets served more than just a single automotive purpose.  A place where, in addition to transportation, water was recharged, food was grown, and people were present.  On Friday, September 18, from 9a-6p at 3552 North Southport Avenue, moss, along with collaborators Stand Design, will transform a surface street parking corral into public space for PARK(ing) Day.  Reclaiming the public realm for the use of all of the public.  Read the rest of this entry »

eisenhowersignA recent New York Times Magazine article described the difficulty of piecing together the ballot-initiated California High Speed Rail, which will connect Los Angeles to San Francisco in 2 hours and 40 minutes (with eventual spurs to Sacramento, north, and San Diego, south) at top speeds of 220 miles per hour.  Quite an improvement over the bumbling trip, along a similar path, on Amtrak that now takes over 12 hours and costs you $55.  The main stumbling block appears to be acquiring right-of-way to allow for straight stretches of tracks (obviously the straighter the track the faster the train can coast).

This got me thinking that Chicago doesn’t at all have a right-of-way problem.  Read the rest of this entry »

McCall Park - portlandOne the best urban open spaces in one of the best US cities is McCall Riverfront Park (named for the former Governor of Oregon) along the the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon.  Aside from its splendid view and close proximity of downtown Portland, it is what brought it to existence that makes it remarkable.   Read the rest of this entry »

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