Favorite Design and Urbanism Blog Posts for the Week of Oct. 8

Landscape Urbanism explains what’s in a name. Cannon Design on rebranding public transit. Johnston Architects weighs the worth of a highly designed (and priced) water bottle. The bellwether of a city’s cycling infrastructure: women cyclists.

What’s in a name? Sarah Peck, founder of the site Landscape Urbanism, blogs about how the term “landscape urbanism” does matter as the journal ‘Scape 2012 features Landscape Urbanism and reviews the blog beyond its name.

“While the dialogue about terminology is important, we also should pause that dialogue for a minute and consider that the larger effort to ‘engage landscape ideas, and landscape thinking, … in broad discourse,’ is what our larger disciplines of landscape, urbanism, planning and architecture need.” – Sarah Peck

Via Landscape Urbanism

Rebranding buses and public transit. Chris Whitcomb of Cannon Design blogs about rebranding public transportation after reading an article on the commute of the future in the Wall Street Journal.

“I grew up in a small town where there only real forms of public transportation were riding your bike, walking or catching the school bus. It’s only in the past five years that I’ve really come to see the benefits of utilizing trains, taxis and the occasional bus. In a world that needs to urbanize and focus on sustainability, efficient public transportation is a must.” – Chris Whitcomb

Via Cannon Design Blog

Related: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444358804578016191463503384.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_sections_careerjournal

World’s best water bottle. Riley MacPhee blogs on his conflicted emotions on a $40 water bottle that is attractive and unique yet has gone too far with its 16 different components and assembled using 65 different steps.

“This very well might be the world’s best water bottle, from a user standpoint, but is that something we should care about? Is it worth $40? … When it comes down to it, it’s a pretty benign product. But the whole goal of the designer is to raise the stakes, to redefine what it means to be, and to own a water bottle. Is that a good thing?” –  Riley MacPhee

Via Johnston Architects Blogs

Bike stores for women. SpokesWomen, an organization that aims to create a national web of knowledge and resources for women in the bike industry, believes that female-specific stores and gear can also help women bikers feel more safe and comfortable when they start riding.

According to a 2009 study, just 24 percent of bicycle trips in America are made by women. But as it stands, cycling is overwhelmingly male-dominated. A Scientific American article cites that “women are considered an ‘indicator species’ for bike-friendly cities for several reasons. First, studies across disciplines as disparate as criminology and child­rearing have shown that women are more averse to risk than men. In the cycling arena, that risk aversion translates into increased demand for safe bike infrastructure as a prerequisite for riding.”

Via The Atlantic Cities

Written by: Genevieve Walker

Related: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=getting-more-bicyclists-on-the-road

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