November 3 – 13, 2010

The American Dream Communicator
The most comprehensive digest of news & commentary about urban policy in America!

Click here for highlights of the 2010 Preserving the American Dream Conference!!

** New Report:
Fixing Transit: The Case for Privatization – Randal O’Toole, Cato Institute **

Mobility & Transportation

Podcars or Robocars? – The Antiplanner
Google cars drive themselves; robots and the law – Volokh Conspiracy
LaHood to states: Proceed with rail projects or give up stimulus funds – CNN Politics
GM publishes “blue paper” to drive sustainable urban mobility – International Business Times
Volvo to “set the standard” in the electric vehicle segment
– AutoBlog Green
Mazda2 Subcompact To Be World’s Most Fuel Efficient Car?
Livability versus Mobility: Tiger II
Light rail defeated, but supporters aren’t giving up – Tampa Tribune
Portland-area residents reject TriMet’s bus-replacement measure –
New Jersey Governor Says He Won’t Budge on Scrapped Rail Tunnel
– New York Times
Metro officials oppose moving Dulles rail station – Washington Examiner
Urban Light Rail Fail
– Warren Meyer,
Light Rail ‘mistake’ costs $1 million – WAVY-TV10, Norfolk, Virginia
The road to hell is paved with bike paths – Fred Barnes, Weekly Standard
Bad-behaving bicyclists are problem, too – Baltimore Sun

** New Report: Residential Land & Regulation Cost Index – Wendell Cox, Demographia **

Housing & Land Use
Suburban Nation, but Urban Political Strategy – Joel Kotkin, New Geography
Take your pick: Smart growth or affordable housing – Washington Examiner
Cuomo’s Green Agenda Comes Out Swinging for Smart Growth – Streetsblog New York
To Some Environmentalists, Smart Growth is Dumb – Triple Pundit
America’s suburban sprawl elevated to aerial art – CNN Urban Planet
In the Capital, Rethinking Old Limits on Buildings – New York Times
With critics on all sides, Portland area’s long-range growth plan faces hearing –
The 20 Cities With The Most Underwater Homes – Business Insider
How the home ownership dream has changed – Vancouver Sun
How Many Subsidies Can Dance on the Head of a TOD? – The Antiplanner
Huge development on fringe of Bay sparks debate over ‘smart growth’ – San Francisco Public Press
Slow Growth Initiative takes seed in Harvard – The Harvard Press
Proposed Somerville plan threatens businesses with eminent domain – Tufts Daily, Massachusetts
City Considers Eminent Domain to Acquire Crowne Plaza Hotel – KCRG-TV, Iowa

Freedom & Grassroot
Tea Party Spells Out Opposition To Rail With Governor-Elect Scott – Tom Tillison, Orlando Political Press
Tea Partiers’ Feel ‘Vindicated’ After Voters Oppose Light Rail – Red County, Florida
There are alternatives to Metro’s plans for rail – Bill King, Houston Chronicle
Florida’s Voters Reject ‘Hometown Democracy’ Measure – Out of the Storm News
Next Tampa mayor not likely to match Iorio’s push for light rail – Tampa Tribune
The crusade against cars – Boston Globe
Let’s Hear it For the Bus – Boston Herald
Streetcars or groceries? –, Atlanta

Not So Sustainable
CATS may seek half-cent sales tax hike to fund rail lines – Charlotte Observer, North Carolina
FasTracks aims to fund shortfall with new tax increase – Denver Examiner

High Speed Rail
High Speed Pork – Robert Samuelson, Real Clear Politics
Not So Fast: Future For High-Speed Rail Uncertain –
Obama Admin Threatens to Take Back Wisconsin Rail Money – New York Times
Is the Portland-Eugene high-speed rail worth the cost? – Natural Resource Report
Rick Scott vs. high-speed rail – Orlando Sentinel
Global bullet train makers gird for Florida high-speed rail bidding war
– Miami Herald
With New England trains, ‘high-speed’ is relative – Washington Post

Growth Management Globally
The Two Worlds of Buenos Aires – Wendell Cox, New Geography
‘Green residents only’ for new Stockholm district – The Local, Sweden
Higher density living gaining popularity – News
From corn fields to condos – LF Press, Canada
Top ten cities with best public transit systems –

Across the Tracks
New Urbanism pioneer Andres Duany embraces ‘smart growth’ – Calgary Herald
If Climate Experts Wrote New York Transportation Policy… –
All Carrot, No Stick – Metropolis Magazine
Smart-Growth Policy Splits Environmentalists –
Recapturing the good old days before urban sprawl –
Livability alive and well with TIGER II
– New Urban Network
Don’t let politics block high-speed rail – St. Petersburg Times, Florida
Think Public Transportation Isn’t a Social Justice Issue? Think Again – Huffington Post
High-speed rail pumps up local economies, claims report – Central Valley Business Times
Canceling high-speed rail is economic treason –, Wisconsin
Even More Pedestrian-Only/Car-Free Spaces in Fall 2010 – Sustainable Cities Collective
Best Public Transit Cities, No Helmets in Holland, Car-Free Jakarta – The City Fix

Vibrant Urbanism
Hip Smart Growther Raps on Urban Planning – Wall Street Journal
Metro train departs with baby in stroller before mother is able to board – Washington Post
4 injured when Blue Line train and car collide in downtown Los Angeles – L.A. Times
Man Assaulted at Westport Light Rail Station in Baltimore, Dies From Injuries – Maryland Law Blog
Malfunctioning escalator injures 4 at L’Enfant Plaza station – Washington Post

Notable Quotables

“What proponents are asking me to do is hand over a blank check.  I simply will not do that.” New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, on his decision to kill a commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River that would have been the most expensive public-works project in the country.

“For certain, good planning principles were sacrificed for the necessity of getting to a decision that kept four governments together.” Tom VanderZanden, Portland-area land-use consultant, on the “tough calls” made in order to preserve regional planning.

“Accepting these federal funds for rail is a lot like checking into Hotel California because once you ‘check-in’ by accepting federal dollars, you can never “check-out” without repaying the billions of dollars previously accepted and already spent.” Letter signed by many Tea Party affiliated groups in Florida to incoming Governor Rick Scott, in opposition to high speed rail.

“They had a $1.7 million dollar campaign.  We had people who said, hey, we wanna wave signs somewhere.” Karen Jaroch, chairwoman of the Tampa 9-12 Project on the David-versus-Goliath victory over a well-financed light rail proposal in Tampa, Florida.

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