Expertise for Communities


  • Tuesday, November 22, 2022 2:22 PM | Anonymous

    "Community Feedback Process Needs Reform" is the title of this article, and while it's whiny in places and bullying in others, there are a number of good points noted.

    In short, the problem with community feedback is not the concept itself, but the way it is executed. We do it too often, for too many things, for too long, and in the wrong manner. We ask the wrong questions of the wrong people and use the answers in the wrong way. Professionals and politicians have so far been afraid to admit there is a problem outside of private conversations, because it can seem anti-democratic and even anti-American to appear opposed to the town hall ethos of local control.

  • Monday, November 07, 2022 3:47 PM | Anonymous

  • Friday, November 04, 2022 9:22 AM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    Travel Through History: The most recent addition to the subway system in the Greater Athens area (@ the port of Piraeus) provides a critical public transportation link while also acting as a museum displaying the archaeological artifacts uncovered during the construction process! One doesn't even have to pay to enter the station and enjoy the museum's exhibits located throughout the station!! 

  • Thursday, November 03, 2022 9:53 AM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    The moment you step out of your home, the decisions you make and the challenges you are facing moving through the city are highly dependent on people’s gender. Despite the still common belief that urban mobility is gender-neutral by default, researchers and practitioners are becoming aware of the inherently different behavioral patterns and experiences of women navigating city streets. We will now take a look at how women practitioners are working on the topic of gender equality in mobility in Copenhagen, Paris and Brussels.

  • Thursday, October 27, 2022 9:41 AM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    Boston's downtown was clobbered by COVID. Foot traffic is still around half of what it was pre-pandemic, as people abandon their high-rise offices to work from home. According to city officials, only 30% of offices downtown are currently occupied.

    City officials have been thinking about how to breathe life back into the once-busy neighborhood. In a plan released Thursday, the downtown Boston they envision has more food trucks, shops and tourists. It has performances, a lively nightlife and more housing — including affordable units.

  • Thursday, October 20, 2022 11:57 AM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    "One of the best things that the many painstaking months of lockdown brought us was the innovation of curbside patios that have become an enduring norm in cities like Toronto, where the streets now feel absolutely alive with all sorts of bustling new outdoor dining spaces."

  • Monday, October 10, 2022 12:58 PM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    "More cities and states are recognizing the harmful impacts of minimum parking requirements, which in many cases have accelerated sprawl and raised the cost of housing construction.

    ...the history of minimum parking requirements, which began as a reaction to the sudden influx of automobiles to cities as the invention became more affordable. “As more people bought cars, a self-fulfilling cycle set in: cities started to separate districts by use, assuming everyone can drive from their residential area to their shopping area to their office. Large highways began to cut through town centers, making it harder to cycle or walk.

  • Monday, October 10, 2022 12:51 PM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    "What Disney does for fictional landscapes, planners must do for real landscapes. 

    Disneyland is nicer than the real world. People are willing to pay for nice, even for only a few hours. That's because, for much of recent history, in the vast majority of places, the imagination and talent has been privatized, funded, and promoted, and the public realm has, in too many cases, been neglected, starved, and vilified. The public realm doesn't get nearly the sort of attention and investment as even a few dozen acres of private realm.

    Disneyland came about precisely at the peak of and, I would argue, because of mid-20th century suburbanization. As the country was becoming deliberately dull and homogenous in the late 1950s, a place of excitement, escape, and, indeed, ersatz urbanism became more marketable. Disneyland promoted suburbanization in order to offer an antidote to suburbanization. The uglier [Anaheim] is, and the less pleasant that walk is, the more exciting those other -lands become.”

  • Wednesday, October 05, 2022 4:54 PM | Anonymous

    Weston & Sampson welcomed Sam Moffett, AICP, as a Senior Principal Planner in its Reading office. Sam has 25 years of environmental planning experience, with a specialty in transportation infrastructure permitting and planning. He has also provided electrical infrastructure siting, planning, and permitting services for electrical utility clients, provided NEPA compliance services for transportation agencies and military clients, completed permitting for merchant solar electric facilities, and prepared critical issues and siting studies for proposed merchant power generation facilities. At Weston & Sampson, Sam will provide leadership for the firm’s growth in the infrastructure design, planning, and permitting marketplace.

    A certified planner, Sam earned his MA in Urban and Environmental Policy from Tufts University and his BA in Government from the Harvard University Extension School.

  • Monday, September 26, 2022 5:41 PM | Daphne Politis (Administrator)

    "Critics of inclusionary zoning frequently point to San Francisco as an example of what not to do. A sluggish year of development has some local politicians ready to reconsider the city’s program."

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