WEEKEND READING: May 5-11, 2007

Where is back! And it's Friday! That's enough good stuff for two consecutive exclamation points!!

First off, there have been a lot of big plans being made for cities across the US (New York, Los Angeles, Seattle) over the past few weeks. WorldChanging has a great article on NY2030 that has really made me reconsider my anti-congestion pricing stance. This week also saw the announcement of a comprehensive plan for Boston.

Cultural/ethnic diversity is something that is discussed often in urbanism, but biodiversity doesn't get nearly as much air time. The UN Convention on Biological Diversity, held in Curitiba, Brazil, is looking to change that, and suggests that cities are the solution to significantly reducing global warming-caused biodiversity loss.

Youngstown, Ohio, has been popping up in recent discussions about shrinking cities. Here is an article from the Wall Street Journal that discusses the city's plan for "smart shrinkage" -- a plan that includes actually removing underutilized neighborhoods and buildings and returning them to their natural state. This seems like a pretty important idea in the US, where a city's success is based entirely on growth.

There are two pieces of Conscious Urbanism-related stuff that I've been meaning to get around to for weeks and have finally decided to just stick into Weekend Reading. Don't let my laziness fool you, though -- these are great reads on turning streets into shared space and innovative chilrdens' programming in the inner city.

Not to name drop LA twice in one post, but I remember reading fantastic urbanism mag The Next American City's first issue when it came out several years ago...back then, only a handful of articles were available online, but one of them was a piece on the movement to restore the Los Angeles River (pictured above in its current state.) I was excited to learn that the City Council just gave this project unanimous approval.

That about wraps it up for this week. Where will be back full-time (which henceforth shall mean "five times a week") on Monday (5/14). This week I'll be looking at the Community 2.0 movement and how it's changing the world around us. Sounds fun, right? See ya soon

(Photo from Flickr user dmperkins.)

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