Congestion Pricing in NYC

From Streetsblog, Paterson Backs Pricing, Introduces Bill in Albany
Congestion Pricing in NYC may yet live. The politics are that the excess revenue from pricing goes to support transit. Locals support (generally), while auto commuters and others who drive into Manhattan oppose. I still have issues with an area scheme vs. a cordon scheme (the latter should have lower collection costs), but again this is a perfect vs. good situation.
My class did a case study on this last semester here

Wilde Lake Village Green RIP

Three links about the reconstruction of Wilde Lake Village Center (nee Wilde Lake Village Green in Columbia).
Wilde Lake was the first village in the planned community of Columbia, Maryland, and the Village Green was among the first buildings. And after 40 years, there are plans afoot to gut the center and rebuild it. While the verbal descriptions are not too helpful, it sounds like the standard banal new urbanist insta-downtown writ small (see e.g. Excelsior and Grand in St. Louis Park Minnesota or Rockville Town Square in Maryland) sans grocery store. I have an interest because it was the shopping center of my youth as well as my interest in planning and the history of Columbia. Times change I suppose, and if the market isn’t there for what exists, it must be changed, though maybe the Historic Preservationists have something to say.
Big plans for Wilde Lake: Owner seeks to raze, rebuild village center – Columbia Flier
Reinventing Wilde Lake the aim —
Reinventing Wilde Lake Village Green – Tales Of Two Cities
For my take on what’s become of Columbia, see: Levinson, David (2003) The Next America Revisited. Journal of Planning Education and Research Summer 2003, Volume 22, Number 4, pp. 329-345.

Transportation as recreation

Noted, but not endorsed (experience suggests they have a tendency to misquote those they talk to), for your reading entertainment: “User-skill-based Mass Transit!”.
The risk of linking to cranks is it gives them publicity, but this one is truly outside the box.
At least they oppose the California High Speed Rail Initiative (unless they get 30% of the funds).

DeSoto Bridge in St. Cloud closed

MnDOT has closed the DeSoto Bridge in St. Cloud:
From MPR: Officials weigh next steps for the DeSoto Bridge
From Pioneer Press: St. Cloud Minnesota 23 Over The Mississippi River / New DeSoto Bridge given a top priority
From Strib Replace St. Cloud bridge? Or repair it?, complete with the quote from the local State Senator:
“State Sen. Tarryl Clark, DFL-St. Cloud, hopes that a replacement bridge can proceed with some of the speed that’s been the hallmark of the 35W bridge reconstruction. State funding is available, federal help might be possible and a design-build process could be used to speed things up, she said.
The Hwy. 23 bridge is a major link not only for St. Cloud but also for the state, she said. Much of the bridge’s traffic comes from outside the local area, she said, and if it takes several years to get a new crossing, “I don’t know how the community is going to make it.””
(Perhaps St. Cloud will cease to exist?)
and from the local paper, a more interesting discussion: The St. Cloud Times:
Plans in Work
Note the discussion of earmarks for a related bridge. And the problems when trying to use that earmark money (two of three bridges would be closed at once). Why the federal government would even consider allocating funds to a state highway remains puzzling (from a normative, not a positive, point of view).

a blog about Networks and Places


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