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book review

Everything You Wanted to Know About Tactical Urbanism

May 20, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Tactical Urbanism book cover

Tactical Urbanism: Short-term Action for Long-term Change, a new book by urban planners Mike Lydon and Anthony Garcia is the first book to really organize all the small fixes that seem to have spontaneously sprung up in so many communities in a way that everyone can understand: a lack of safe sidewalks or crosswalks; the absence of clear signage; the dearth of neighborhood parks and plazas, and the lack of community connection and solidarity.[read more]

80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World – Book Review

May 20, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Designed for the Future by Jared Green

In Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World, Jared Green offers 80 thought-provoking and frequently inspiring answers to this question from landscape architects, urban planners, architects, journalists, artists, and environmental leaders in the U.S. and beyond[read more]

'Dark Age Ahead' by Jane Jacobs [BOOK REVIEW]

May 13, 2015 by Tyler Caine

Dark Age Ahead

Well known for her voice of calm critique, Jacobs examines five necessary pillars of cultural vibrancy, as well as explaining why our failing to maintain them could levy an age of cultural deficiency for modern day North America.[read more]

This Is What A World Without Cars Would Be Like – and It's Beautiful [BOOK REVIEW]

May 7, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Imagining a Carless Future

What would a world without cars be like? How would it transform our cities? This review of Eric Sanderson's book, packed with beautiful infographics, says that the author wants this book to spark a revolution in how we live, and to do this he has to touch and motivate our souls.[read more]

Collected Ideas That Bring Hope for a Greener, Healthier World

April 22, 2015 by Kaid Benfield

Green Ideas and Inspiration

I can't think of a better time to review Jared Green's new book, 'Designed for the Future,' than the week of Earth Day. This highly accessible volume, subtitled '80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World,' contains short essays and beautiful photos solicited and edited by Green and describing wonderful examples.[read more]

Complex and Useful: Green Is Infrastructure

April 11, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Green Infrastructure Complexity

This report, in line with the current principles of sustainability, discusses green infrastructure as the visible expression of natural and human ecosystem processes that work across scales and contexts to provide multiple benefits for people and their environments.[read more]

Is This the End of the Suburbs? Leigh Gallagher Thinks So

April 2, 2015 by Christopher Berggren

Urbanization and the Future of the Suburbs


In 'The End of the Suburbs,' a story is told of the big changes underway in the way Americans are choosing to live in the 21st century. For sixty years, urban areas have become decentralized, and downtowns turned into ugly, parking lot deserts where only marginalized people lived. But all that is changing.[read more]

Wet Matter: New Ways of Understanding Our Oceans

March 26, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Oceans and Understanding

Wet Matter, Harvard Design Magazine’s latest issue, asks us to reconsider our oceans, which cover the vast majority of our planet. Edited by Pierre Bélanger, ASLA, the issue brings together a range of fields and an array of lenses to “unlearn our binary, dichotomous relationship with the ocean.”[read more]

Book Review: The New Sustainability Advantage

March 17, 2015 by Derek Wong

Businesses and Sustainability

Proactively incorporating sustainability into a business’ core strategy can increase profits by 51 to 81%, according to corporate sustainability expert and author Bob Willard. His book The New Sustainability Advantage and the companion online tools lay out seven strategies and estimate potential returns.[read more]

Revealed: The Deficiencies of Modern Street Planning that Hinder Walkability (BOOK REVIEW)

March 10, 2015 by Tyler Caine

This book is by a pioneer of walkability in cities.

What are the deficiencies of modern street planning that hinder the pedestrian experience as well a coordinated attack to solve them? This book, by a pioneer of walkability in cities, will tell you.[read more]

Triumph of the City: Book Report

March 6, 2015 by Christopher Berggren

Urban Triumph

In 'Triumph of the City,' renowned economist Edward Glaeser presents a clear case for why our cities and urban spaces are our greatest inventions, how they make us richer, smarter, greener, healthier, and happier, and how we can still yet improve them.[read more]

City Ecology: There Are Egrets Near the Empire State Building

February 27, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

You wouldn't believe where nature can thrive.

New York Harbor is a thriving natural habitat. The mixing of fresh and salt waters, combined with a rich flow of nutrients from its watershed, makes visibility poor, and hides its vitality. It is easy to make cocktail conversation about eels, oysters, humpback whales (whales!) and the other remarkable creatures that share New York City with its people.[read more]