- Project for Public Spaces | Eleven Principles for Creating Great Community Places (PDF)
- Project for Public Spaces | What is Placemaking? (PDF)
It would seem that the StreetsBlog Crowd has decided to recycle an idea begun in the 1960s in the Haight-Ashbury District.
I guess that the Berteau Greenway and other so-called improvements are not quite what the Urban Cycling Community wanted. This sort of ‘moving the goal posts‘ effort after each quarter of play is already getting old.
The Open Streets demonstrations of the past two years were lame. And of course the city decided that the money to produce these chaotic and rather dismal events might be better spent elsewhere. I agree.
You really cannot easily revive the Hippie Culture of a half century ago. The Grateful Dead are already doing what needs to be done to keep that movement alive. But things have changed.
If you want a more manageable scene where you can walk to breakfast and sit outdoors while eating, those things already exist. But not every city neighborhood wants that sort of arrangement.
So I guess we will have to settle for listening to pseudo-Hippie babble from the 1960s reworked to sound like something truly meaningful for the 2015s. But trust me when I say that the world is way past this nonsense.
The best you can hope for is that the local Starbucks shops remain open and your outdoor cafes prosper.
You Do Remember RiverView and Old Town Right?
My guess is that most of the folks who are now trying to bring about PlaceMaking have no idea that the entire Urban Cycling Movement is part of an attempt to roll back the clock to a place and time when I was a kid.
I remember Old Town. I visited the art galleries and saw Bollie Kollack sing at the Earl of Old Town. I also remember RiverView. The Bobs and the Thrill House were amazing. But as I said before, times have changed.
Making bicycles the primary form of transportation is just a pipe dream. Something more like an automobile with silent electric motors will be what takes over. And as for parking these things will drop you off at your destination and either return to allow another member of your family to use them or park themselves at home. Then when you are ready to leave they will come and get you.
We Can’t Even Make Divvy Sustainable
The one glaring bit of reality that should make you realize that you cannot revive the past is the fact that something as awesomely simple as Divvy cannot find the sustainable economic footing it needs. You cannot ignore that glaring reality. In fact the folks who claim to be the ones who are in favor of promoting cycling are least likely to be able to produce a yearly membership for the service.
They whine about the quality of the gearing on the bikes and scorn the very people who use them. So guess what, the service will eventually fail and we will have no one to blame but ourselves.