May 29 – June 4, 2010

The American Dream Communicator                    May 29 – June 4, 2010
The most comprehensive digest of news & commentary about urban policy in America!

>>  September 23-25, 2010 <<

Join us for the 8th Annual Preserving the American Dream Conference in Orlando, Florida.  Please mark the date change and make your plans to attend now!

Mobility & Transportation

Reinventing the automobile – MIT book proposes drive-by-wire, all roads priced – Peter Samuel,
Transportation Solutions Fit to a ‘T’ – Benita Dodd, Georgia Public Policy Foundation
Driverless Cars — You Heard It Here First – David Boaz, Cato @ Liberty
The Cost of Slow Travel – Steven Polzin, Planetizen
String Rail – a low cost, low impact, high speed transport alternative – GizMag
Should Mass Transit Get $2 Billion In Emergency Operating Aid? – National Journal
Amtrak ‘misled’ Congress on finances; rail service was on brink of bankruptcy – Washington Times
Virginia facing payment to Amtrak for rail service – Richmond Times-Dispatch
Patrick administration says it is creating a ‘green’ DOT – Boston Globe
Tampa mayor to devote final year in office to light rail fight – St. Petersburg Times
Rail ideas await their fate in Milwaukee – Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
King of the Road – The Atlantic
Transit advocates gearing up to push a transit tax to bring light rail to Triangle – Raleigh Examiner, North Carolina
If You Build It, They Still Won’t Come – Tennessee Center for Policy Research
Light-rail train derailed in crash in North San Jose – Silicon Valley Mercury News, California
Light Rail Hits Truck Downtown –, Sacramento
Harlingen gets rid of red light cameras – Brownsville Herald, Texas
Fears over “traffic calming” measures – Guardian Series, England 

Housing & Land Use
The Suburban Exodus: Are We There Yet? – Wendell Cox, New Geography
Subdivisions: The Lots-Per-Minute Race – Rick Harrison, New Geography
Urban Land Institute backs sprawl-limiting law – San Francisco Chronicle
Metro bristles at last-minute addition of land by Washington County – Portland Oregonian
Lifestyle centers are growing in popularity, but some say malls will win out – Washington Post
New Urbanist condos in downtown Baltimore bought by lender at auction – Baltimore Sun
Downtown Stamford condos also on auction block – Stamford Advocate, Connecticut
In Vancouver, ‘affordable’ housing means $1,600 a month – National Post
Vancouver judged Canada’s most walkable city –
Junk cities – Frederick News Post, Maryland
A tale of two counties – Washington Post
City Budget Large On Largess – House Pundit, North Carolina
LEED, 10 years old, is still growing – Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot
Planning ‘charrette’ will shape city’s future – Revelstoke Times Review, British Columbia
Charrette participants embrace Silver Spring’s new urbanity – Greater Greater Washington
Learning to Say No to TIF – Chicago Reader
Tax Increment Financing Is Inflating Property Taxes – Say Anything Blog
Approaching critical transitway vote, Stamford tries to sway representatives – Stamford Advocate
Development group nixes eminent domain from action plan – Ft. Smith City Wire, Arkansas
Last Stand: Battle Against Eminent Domain – Fox News
‘Blight’ Gives Way to Spite – Reason Hit & Run
Standing in a Tunnel’s Path for Commuter Rail, Forced to Leave – New York Times

Freedom & Grassroots
Twenty-first Century Electorate’s Heart is in the SuburbsWinograd & Hais, New Geography
On Smart Growth: Remember to Grow Within First – Kristen Jeffers, Waxing Philosophical
We seem to be of a singular mind when it comes to public transportation – Ashley Sanchez, Austin American-Statesman
Smart Growth Parallels Russian Soviet Planning – Before It’s News
Measure F puts developers, environmentalists at odds – ABC-7, San Francisco
Yeah, That’s Really “Affordable” Housing Allright – Unambiguously Ambidextrous
An eminent domain win for ‘little guy’ – Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Not So Sustainable
$239,000 Conductor Among M.T.A.’s 8,000 Six-Figure Workers – New York Times
Cuts could leave some bus riders stranded – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
A transit mismatch: Big plans, little cash – Charlotte Observer, North Carolina
Sound Transit express-bus fares going up Tuesday – Puget Sound Business Journal, Seattle

High Speed Rail
A primary pivot point for California transit – San Francisco Chronicle
A high-speed ride to nowhere – San Gabriel Valley Tribune, California
Homes, businesses, churches lie in the path of high speed rail –, California
NY to Start High-Speed Rail Construction for “Empire Corridor” – NBC New York
HSR group on edge of racketeering claim in Tampa toll’s lawsuit –
HSR scheme shakes Primrose Hill’s celebrity residents – Times of London
Boring freight and exciting high-speed rail – Larvatus Prodeo
High-speed trains through Portland suburbs? –, Oregon
After lagging on rapid rail transit, Pinellas now at full throttle – St. Petersburg Times, Florida

Growth Management Globally

Could land trusts be the answer to Australia’s housing affordability crisis? – Aussie Blog
Australia: Surging house prices built on a debt time-bomb – Global Realm
London housing shortage to push up prices –
Home ownership costs in Canada keep rising – National Post

Across the Tracks

The Livability Moment – Robert Puentes, The New Republic
Solving the real housing crisis – Atlanticville, New Jersey
Is New Urbanism Working? – Hub & Spokes
Tall is Beautiful – Mother Jones
10 ways cities and towns can kick the offshore-oil habit – Grist
What To Do With the Suburbs? – Huffington Post
Further confirmation that sprawl sucks – Auckland Transport Blog
US public transit systems cutting service and raising fares – World Socialist Web Site
Increased Density near Light Rail Stations – Royal Ramblings
The Rise of the Rail, Part 1: An Overview of the Dulles Metrorail Project –
Car-free downtown would be good for us, business – Hometown Annapolis
Why is public transit such a difficult thing? – Sarasota Herald Tribune, Florida
Perils of Collective Transport
Woman stabs nine in China train rampage – Yahoo News

Vibrant Urbanism

Lawsuit: Streetcar tracks unsafe for cyclists – Seattle Post-Intelligencer
‘Green’ Bank Robber Flees Scene Of Crime Using Public Transportation – Around the Water Cooler
2 Robbed Near Light Rail; Police Investigate –, Charlotte, North Carolina
Reasons I Hate Public Transportation – Not a New Yorker

Notable Quotables

“The federal government has told us, ‘Congratulations, you now have to provide the subsidy for these rail lines,'” said Cord A. Sterling, on the requirement that states pay the costs for regional routes.

“Many communities in this country were requiring new centers to look like town centers and forced such upon builders, and many of them were mistakes.” Gary Rappaport, on the success and failure of lifestyle centers.

“It’s a sad fact that we now produce more flats than family homes – and much of the blame lies at the government’s door.” William Griffith, on the Smart Growth policies that had led to a shortage of housing in London.

* Come across a good quote or news story?  Send it to me at  Check for past editions of the ADC Communicator on our website here.  And don’t forget to forward this to your friends and colleagues!
** Check out Interviews with the Experts for the latest commentary on trends taking place in cities all across America. **
*** This Communicator sponsored by Happy Smart Growth ***

        Markets, not mandates, for people who are free!

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