One of my favorite bicycle advocacy catch phrases is “One less car!” In celebration of this worthy and sustainable effort, Kathy and I spent yesterday (Saturday) accomplishing all our errands on our bicycles. Between us, we totaled more than 27 miles of travel on our bicycles, riding to places like the florist, Kohl’s, the bank, my apartment, her house, Douglas J, the Trek store, and other businesses in the area.
All in all, it was a very rewarding experience that we intend to duplicate over and over again, thus removing our two cars from the local roadways on those days where we ride about town instead of driving. Combined with our regular bike commuting to/from work, we are hoping to eventually limit our car usage solely to longer trips, inclement weather (particularly in winter) or travel-related purposes.
Considering 50 percent of all trips are three miles or less in length, just imagine the positive impacts that could occur if each and every one of us dedicated just one day per week or one day per month to run all our errands by bicycle…or by transit…or by foot. Such an act would lower our individual and collective carbon footprint, improve our health, reduce congestion, demonstrate sustainability to others, and serve as a positive reminder that not all transportation must be done by the almighty automobile. Will you join us?
Canal Bridges in Copenhagen – Source: copenhagenize.com
Above and below are both photographs and/or artist’s renderings of some of the graceful and stylish bicycle bridges that can be found in Denmark. While these bridges may not have the dynamic boldness of those posted previously from the Netherlands, they are sleek, artistic, handsome, and functional in their own right. Particularly likable is the way these bridges fit aesthetically into their surroundings without being overpowering. Enjoy!
Brygge Bridge in Copenhagen – Source: kimbach.org
Inderhavns (retractable) Bridge in Copenhagen – Source: dak.dk
Abuen Bridge in Copenhagen – Source: demotix.com
Cable-stayed bridge under development in Odense – Source: cycling-embassy.dk
Woven Bridge in Copenhagen – Source mlrp.dk
For those out there that think Detroit’s a lost cause, the magnificent Dequindre Cut Greenway is an example of why you are wrong. Constructed along an abandoned below-grade rail corridor, the 1.35 mile greenway links some of Detroit’s coolest features – including the scenic 2.5 mile long RiverWalk, the vibrant Eastern Market, and the trendy Villages. Combine those with a world-class greenway for cyclists and pedestrians and some seriously hip graffiti artwork and you have the recipe for a Midwestern version of New York City’s High Line or Atlanta’s Belt Line.
Kudos to all those individuals and organizations involved in making the Dequindre Cut a post-industrial success story that truly is “a cut above” most other nonmotorized trails.
The twin-tube 4,200 foot long PortMiami Tunnel is scheduled to open to traffic in May of 2014. Under construction since 2010, the $1 billion public-private partnership project will extend Interstate 395 under the Government Cut shipping channel separating Watson Island and Dodge Island thus linking the Port of Miami (a.k.a. PortMiami) with the city’s mainland highway network.
The highway tunnel is designed to provide a continuous fixed link (rather than a drawbridge) which allows port related traffic, including heavy truck traffic and cruise-related traffic, to avoid clogging downtown Miami streets. In 2013, Miami saw more than four million passengers pass through its cruise ship terminals, which makes it the busiest cruise port in the world.
Some of the best seaport images yet, come from East Asia. Enjoy!
Incheon, South Korea – Source: ark.co.kr
Kaohsiung, Taiwan – Source: reocities.com
Kobe, Japan – Source: eorc.jaxa.jp
Tainjin, China – Source: chinadaily.com.cn
Tokyo, Japan (great view of Haneda International Airport too) – Source: eoearth.org
Vladivostok, Russia – Source: earthobservatory.nasa.gov
Downtown Boston from Cambridge
I had the opportunity to visit Boston and Cambridge, Massachusetts in mid-March. Here is a list of eleven planning-related lessons I took away from visiting these two dynamic cities.
- Preserve, protect and celebrate your community’s history.
- A varied blend of historic structures and new edifices is visually intoxicating.
- Savor and build upon the benefits derived from being home to institutions of higher education.
- Cultural diversity and inclusiveness makes a community much more vibrant.
- Accessible mass transit and bike sharing systems are wonderful things.
- Denser urban development can be softened by rich and varied public spaces.
- The removal of an ugly freeway can reawaken once forlorn areas.
- The heart of the city can be a great place to raise a family.
- Pedestrians, bicyclists, transit, and cars can successfully and safely coexist.
- A thriving city requires thriving neighborhoods – you cannot have one without the other.
- A compact and walkable urban core is far more preferable to a sprawling mess.
Below is a list of the twenty most innovative metropolitan areas in the United States, based on the number of patents issued between 2000 and 2011. Most surprising is the absence of the Research Triangle of Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Denver-Boulder, Colorado; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and the Salt Lake City, Utah urban areas.
- Silicon Valley, California = 89,547
- New York City, New York = 61,587
- San Francisco-Oakland, California = 54,205
- Los Angeles, California = 49,193
- Boston-Cambridge, Massachusetts = 40,195
- Chicago, Illinois = 31,751
- Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota = 28,088
- Seattle, Washington = 26,359
- San Diego, California = 25,790
- Detroit-Ann Arbor, Michigan = 25,293
- Dallas- Fort Worth, Texas = 23,230
- Austin, Texas = 22,916
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania = 22,481
- Houston, Texas = 21,035
- Portland, Oregon = 17,641
- Washington, DC-MD-VA = 16,061
- Boise, Idaho = 15,969
- Phoenix, Arizona = 14,438
- Rochester, New York = 14,407
- Atlanta, Georgia = 14,381