City’s creativity relies on affordability, author says

Vancouver is poised to become one of the creative cities of the world, but that success could be eroded if it can’t find a way to provide affordable housing, says the current guru of urban planning.

“You are in the proverbial catbird seat,” said Richard Florida, the hugely popular author of The Rise of the Creative Class, whose work has generated headlines around North America and even appearances on The Colbert Report.

For one, he says, Vancouver has developed a new kind of urbanism that combines a beautiful built environment with a beautiful natural environment

Read more @ the SOURCE: Vancouver Sun – City’s creativity relies on affordability, author says.

Mauling the Mall? Don’t change the bricks: Halprin – The Hook – ONARCHITECTURE-

While discussing the proposed $7.5 million renovation of the Downtown Mall, city planners and the MMM Design Group, the Norfolk-based design firm contracted to do the work, have repeatedly vowed to remain faithful to the original Lawrence Halprin design. Interestingly, no one bothered to consult Halprin himself.

Reached at the California studio where he’s busy working on his memoirs, the 92-year-old landscape architect says he was unaware of the current plan to update his 1976 Charlottesville Mall design. Still, it wasn’t unfamiliar news. Quite a few of his landscapes have been renovated and altered over the years– and in 2003, the same year he received the National Medal of Arts from President Bush, the nation’s highest honor for artistic excellence, his Skyline Park in Denver was demolished.

Read more @ the SOURCE: The Hook – ONARCHITECTURE- Mauling the Mall? Don’t change the bricks: Halprin.

City unveils self-sustaining water centre – Metro

It’s unmistakable and unprecedented as Calgary’s first eco-friendly and fully sustainable office building.

The Water Centre “landscaper” building, as long as the Calgary Tower is high, is home to nearly 800 water treatment staff, cost $43 million to build and should pay for itself within 15 years through energy savings, said city project manager Russ Golightly.

read more @ the SOURCE: Metro News.ca – City unveils self-sustaining water centre.

Mud Lick Creek Project Fights Erosion, Pollution – Science – redOrbit

A half-million-dollar plan to re-engineer and protect Mud Lick Creek is designed to enhance what is one of Roanoke County’s most popular parks.

County Engineer George Simpson led a discussion Monday morning with 30 to 40 people at Garst Mill Park on a project to fight erosion and pollution of the creek there.

Approximately 3,000 linear feet of Mud Lick Creek run through the park, making it one of the park’s most prominent features and one that’s especially popular with children, who wade in it.

The project, which the county is calling a “restoration,” is a pilot, Simpson said, attempting to re-create the natural contours of the stream. Similar programs may be attempted in other watersheds threatened by pollution and erosion if this one is successful.

SOURCE: redOrbitMud Lick Creek Project Fights Erosion, Pollution – Science –

Los Altos looking for a new look

A new development, such as an office and retail building or landscaping enhancement, doesn’t suddenly appear by magic, although it may seem that way to citizens who are not paying attention. There’s often a long process, including planning, negotiating and compromising among developers and city officials, followed by city meetings and public hearings as builders struggle to meet city requirements. The first draft of a plan is rarely, if ever, the last.

Loyola Corners – This shopping district that traces back to Los Altos’ early days may receive a makeover. Responding to safety concerns and complaints of lack of aesthetics, the city has employed landscape architect David Gates to draft a Loyola Corners beautification plan – repairing and adding new sidewalks, adding landscaping and repainting streetlights black.

The project is in the “very early stages right now,” Assistant City Manager James Walgren said.

SOURCE: Los Altos Town Crier » Behind the scenes.

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