Links for urbanists – No. 3

Villa Verticale - Cat Poljski (Etching, aquatint)

Assorted links to some of the useful, the informative, the interesting, and sometimes even the slightly weird sources I stumble across from time-to-time:

  1. The wonderful world of Cat Poljski.
  2. A “brief, wondrous” history of brutalist architecture. Back in the olden days when I was a student, we were weaned on photos of this sort of stuff. Like religion, if they get you young enough you’re a goner – I still love the pile of Mars Bars Moshe Safdie confected for Habitat 67 (although this photograph is its least flattering angle).
  3. The Naipaul test – can you tell the sex of the authors of these novels just by reading a brief extract?  V.S. Naipaul once famously claimed: “I read a piece of writing and within a paragraph or two I know whether it is by a woman or not”.
  4. Better pedestrian infrastructure is essential for safer roads and neighbourhoods – the tragic case of Raquel Nelson and her son AJ, in Atlanta.
  5. Have we already hit and passed ‘peak electricity’ in Australia?
  6. A simple economic model of fare evasion and non-compliance.
  7. Intercity buses are much cheaper than trains in the US (if you ignore the cost of building the roads).
  8. There’s lots of competition between PC makers but they’re all competing on price. Only one company makes the iMac but it has the freedom to make something really good.
  9. A lighter bicycle doesn’t make you any faster.
  10. Mark Twain on Taming the Bicycle (this is the real Mark Twain).
  11. The California Cycleway, opened in 1900, was an elevated tollway built specially for bicycle traffic through the Arroyo Seco, intended to connect the cities of Pasadena and Los Angeles.
  12. The Great Transition claims to provide the first comprehensive blueprint for building an economy based on stability, sustainability and equality.
  13. The parallel between climate change and teaching evolution in schools in Tennessee in 1925.
  14. Cost Overruns: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Hate Bent Flyvbjerg.
  15. GPS and the end of the road – place and placelessness in America.
  16. 19th century cyclists paved the way for modern motorists’ roads.
  17. All aboard Tokyo’s last surviving streetcar.
  18. Melbourne is No. 8 in’s list of the 25 cities for blokes to visit in 2011.
  19. The top-10 least-polluting cities in the US – LA is No. 8 and Miami is No. 5. Having a temperate climate helps heaps.
  20. Video flythrough of Westfield’s new Stratford shopping centre in London.
  21. A new look at the industrial revolution – how it broke free from the shackles of land.
  22. Stockholm is the only city in the world where electors voted for congestion pricing.
BOOK GIVEAWAYfollow this link to be in the running for one of two copies of Meg Mundell’s Black Glass. Entries close midday Thursday 15 September 2011.