Category Archives: Urban

Some notes on Hong Kong’s newish waterfront “promenades” and on its other pedestrian facilities

Hong Kong is perhaps best known in the world of urban studies for its extraordinarily high transit share. Public transit accounts for a larger percentage of journeys in Hong Kong than in any other city in the world.1 Something like 77.6% of … Continue reading

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Why the BeltLine is so important to Atlantans

The still far-from-complete Atlanta BeltLine is one of the most discussed pieces of non-automotive infrastructure in the country. Two books have been written about its creation.1 A huge number of newspaper stories have also been devoted to it. Furthermore, hundreds … Continue reading

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Was Chicago still building “too much” in 2016?

A year ago, I put up a post in which I pointed out that, given Chicago’s population losses, there seemed to be an enormous amount of building in the Chicago urban area, or at least an enormous amount of building-permit filing. No other American … Continue reading

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Harbin and Vladivostok

I was in Harbin and Vladivostok last week. These two cities may be in different countries, but they are only 500 km apart and have a common late-19th-century origin as Russian railroad towns. Harbin was the administrative center of the … Continue reading

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The Promenade Fleuve-Montagne in Montréal

When I was in Montréal a week ago, I made a point of visiting the new Promenade Fleuve-Montagne. The Promenade is a 3.8 km walkway between the old port on the Saint Lawrence (the “fleuve”) and the base of Mount … Continue reading

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New York’s pedestrian infrastructure gets even better

The New York area famously accounts for something like 40% of all U.S. transit trips.1 New York may do even better when it comes to pedestrian trips, but these are a great deal harder to measure. New York’s walkscore (89.2) ranks first, but … Continue reading

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Some notes on the transportation geography of San José, Costa Rica

Costa Rica is in many ways one of the world’s most admirable countries. It gave up its army in 1949 and has been a democracy ever since, holding freely contested elections every four years. No other Latin American country has … Continue reading

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The Madrid Río project

I visited the parklands created by the Madrid Río project1 a couple of weeks ago. The area had still been under construction in 2010 when I was last in Madrid. The Madrid Río project is of course one of the world’s most famous … Continue reading

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Detroit’s new QLine streetcar

Most of the new, short, slow, and infrequently-running streetcar lines built in the United States in the last few years appear to have been constructed at least to some extent for reasons having little to do with any possible role as transportation facilities. Many seem … Continue reading

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Chicago loses—and gains—population

According to a report that the Census Bureau posted a couple of days ago, Chicago has been continuing to lose population. The city’s estimated population in 2016 was 2,704,958. In 2015 it had been 2,713,596. Chicago is the only city among … Continue reading

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