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The driverless car, and the rail loop

The urge of regulators is usually to take away freedoms because there will always be people who take them to excess.

Using your cellphone while driving is a recent example: The regulatory response to motorists driving badly while on the phone was to tell us to stay off the phone.

But there’s another response: Carry on travelling, using the phone, reading a book – whatever. One way to do that is to use public transport, but this New York Times article suggests another is coming, and soon – the car that negotiates hazards, watches out for pedestrians…. actually does the driving.

“4 manufacturers — Volvo, BMW, Audi & Mercedes — have announced that as soon as this year they will begin offering models that will come with sensors & software to allow the car to drive itself in heavy traffic at speeds up to 37 miles/hour (60kph) …. At faster speeds, Cadillac’s Super Cruise system is intended to automate freeway driving by keeping the car within a lane and adjusting speed to other traffic.”

On TV, the Jetsons took their car off the road and into the air, but they still looked where they were going. This is different and raises a number of questions about transport planning.

Auckland Council & Auckland Transport are working on plans to complete the rail loop between Britomart & Mt Eden stations, focusing intensive development on 3 new stations along that new link. The council & its transport organisation have concluded no other public transport system will get the anticipated numbers of commuters in & out of the cbd, that buses & cars are heading to gridlock.

The Government doesn’t believe some of the numbers supporting the rail link, has been generally opposed to rail anyway, but has been otherwise unhelpful in promoting ideas on how to beat time-consuming & expensive congestion.

One of the key differences between Auckland & Government has been the timeframe for counting the discount rate for the development benefit:cost ratio. The Government standard is 30 years, which would mean the project is never feasible; the council & Auckland Transport want double that, which would make it feasible.

Imagine 2 scenarios. In one, in 15 years or so, you can’t reliably travel anywhere near the cbd by road because all roads are gridlocked. Access around much of the region is also badly hampered, and in many places gridlocked, because politicians weren’t prepared to pay the price of a system that would ease travel and at the same time encourage development of precincts which would suit new (for Auckland) living & working styles.

In the other scenario, the rail loop has been completed and was enthusiastically greeted by a surge of new rail commuters, some of the intensification in the new precincts has been carried out but, after a short time, rail users have declined and enthusiasm for living close together has also waned. The decline in rail use is because new modes of personal transport have been introduced – in the style of the cars in the New York Times story, because you can travel in your own suitcase – and communication advances have made it even less necessary to travel to communal offices. The reduced need for intensive office development has changed development economics and, in turn, that has changed overall project economics.

The first of these 2 scenarios is likely, the second fits easily under “dreaming”.

I was unimpressed by a transport minister who found the scope of the Sinclair Knight Merz city centre future access study inadequate, when his own staff had been involved in it. But it’s also important that some of that dreaming is done – scenarios from the possible to the far-fetched – and that it covers more than currently envisaged travel routes.

Link: New York Times, Drivers with hands full

Earlier stories:
31 December 2012: Stations are about transport? Or building a precinct?
31 December 2012: City rail: First it’s a question of will – there are lots of ways to do how
17 December 2012: Wider picture of Auckland access still not clear
14 December 2012: Auckland says rail link vital, Brownlee says study inadequate – it’s politics over action, but study plainly too narrow
13 September 2012:University confirms conditional deal on brewery site and likely Tamaki exit
3 July 2012:City rail link route affects 280 properties
9 March 2012: Council advances $8 million of budget for rail loop work
29 June 2011: Council agrees to seek rail loop designation
1 June 2011: Government says “not yet” for cbd rail loop, mayor says “all go”
26 November 2010:Brewer casts doubt on cbd growth predictions in rail loop case
25 November 2010: CBD rail loop business case unveiled

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Attribution: New York Times, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Meatless meat?

In a land of sheep & cattle, should we take talk of fake meat seriously? Maybe not yet – according to Melbourne journalist, author & researcher Evelyn Tsitas it mostly tastes like mush.

But, she says in an article on the On Line Opinion website yesterday, there are plenty of examples of work underway to create “meat” which tastes good and doesn’t harm animals.

Maybe nothing to worry about at the moment, but the question is there: What is the long-term future of an agricultural economy? And, from that, for traditional land uses?

On Line Opinion, Faking it: meat substitutes take centre stage

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Attribution: On Line Opinion, Evelyn Tsitas, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 11 November 2012

Contents:

Stimulation, gridlock or economic advance?

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

9 November 2012:

Stimulation, gridlock or economic advance?

The New Zealand approach to defeating a recession in both 1987 and during the last 5 years of global financial bewilderment differed both times from most approaches around the world. Here, the public & business were left pretty much to their own devices, with limited economic stimulation.

Australia had strong government support post ’87 and resorted to stimulative tactics this time round, such as lifting the subsidy paid to first-homebuyers, which immediately raised the price of housing. When the stimulation ended or was reduced, construction slumped and prices fell back. All that happened was that some economy activity was shifted forward, with a consequent raising of costs & prices, followed by an economic desert: no gain.

In the US, the stimulation was excessive in the attempt to defeat cyclical change by maintaining economic growth based on consumer spending. But most of the stimulation didn’t go to consumers and, if it did, they thought saving and cutting their debt were better options.

The New Republic surprised me a while back with a story on the achievements of President Obama in his first term – he’d quietly accomplished a lot despite the daily grind of political combat. Most interesting for me from his re-election is his approach to the debt mountain, what & by how much he might try to cut back, if at all. His decision on that will affect all of us.

The central battlefield will again be over the terms of the American welfare state – welfare for the rich versus welfare for the poor & middle, and a New Republic article yesterday expands on the second part of the US political system, the pressure (lobby) system, to explain the paths the 2 sides are likely to take to block/advance economic change.

Link: Despite their losses last night, Republicans have one trick left: gridlock

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 7 October 2012

Contents:

Who needs a desk? Or an office?

Counting the trillions

Planet of Cities and Atlas of Urban Expansion – how to accommodate growth

Beauty in sprawl

What exactly is a smart city?

Today’s items look like they cover just a handful of topics – but there are 14 links you can go to if you want to dig further into them.

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

7 October 2012:

 

Who needs a desk? Or an office?

 

Colliers International research director Alan McMahon reckoned, in a presentation this week, it would be hard to go much below the 15.9m²/workstation reached in a 2010 survey. In fact, cbd office density relaxed a little in 2012 to an average 17.1m²/workstation.

One factor is that people need a desk. But do they? According to a Citrix survey in 19 countries, senior IT executives estimated they’d need only 7 desks for every 10 office workers by 2020, thanks to increasing telecommuting, and in telecommuting-friendly countries the ratio would get down to 6 desks:10 workers.

 

Link: Fastcoexist, The future of working from home

 

Counting the trillions

When you’re counting the numbers – the cost of a purchase or project, for instance – keep in mind the Government contribution. In the US, the Zero Hedge website helps in this exercise. It calculated at the end of August that the US Government took just 286 days to tot up another $US1 trillion of debt – $US3.5 billion/day.

At this rate, Zero Hedge calculated, US Government debt will hit $US17 trillion on 10 June 2013, $US18 trillion on 16 March 2014, $US19 trillion on 3 January 2015 and $US20 trillion on 16 October 2015. But first it has to cut through Congress’ latest self-imposed ceiling of $US16.394 trillion, which should happen in December.

Links: Zero Hedge $16,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA!

Planet of Cities and Atlas of Urban Expansion – how to accommodate growth

Lincoln Institute visiting fellow Shlomo “Solly” Angel has produced a 360-page book on how to accommodate rapidly expanding urban growth without using containment policies – which, he says, are “practically useless in addressing the central questions”.

That book, Planet of Cities, has a 397-page companion volume, Atlas of Urban Expansion, “a comprehensive guide to the past & future characteristics of metropolitan growth”.

The Planet of Cities abstract notes that, in place of containment/smart growth, Mr Angel proposes to revive an alternative making-room paradigm that seeks to come to terms with the expected expansion of cities, particularly in the rapidly urbanising countries in Asia & Africa, and to make the minimally necessary preparations for such expansion instead of seeking to contain it.

Mr Angel says city expansion can’t be contained, so room must be made to accommodate it. Despite his criticism of containment, he’s not opposed to all management. He says densities must be sustainable – allowed to increase if they’re too low, decrease if they’re too high.

Those are 2 of the 4 propositions to his paradigm. The other 2 are:

Strict containment of urban expansion destroys the homes of the poor and puts new housing out of reach for most people. Decent housing for all can be ensured only if urban land is in ample supply, andAs cities expand, the necessary land for public streets, public infrastructure networks and public open spaces must be secured in advance of development.

The Atlas of Urban Expansion abstract notes: “The world’s urban population is expected to increase from 3.5 billion in 2010 to 6.2 billion in 2050, and almost all of this growth is expected to take place in less developed countries. Cities in developed countries will add only 160 million people to their populations during this period, while cities in developing countries will need to absorb 15 times that number, or close to 2.6 billion people, thereby doubling their total urban population of 2.6 billion in 2010. Given the expected decline in urban densities, these cities are likely to more than triple their developed land areas by 2050.”

Mr Angel presented a preliminary paper on the books’ theme at a conference on sustainable development in January 2011, hosted by the Lincoln Institute and sponsored by the Cities Alliance & World Bank urban department. He’s a senior research scholar at the Urbanisation Project, adjunct professor of urban planning at New York University’s Wagner School and a l at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School.

Links: Planet of Cities Atlas of Urban Expansion Making room for a planet of cities Cities Alliance

Beauty in sprawl

German photographer Christoph Gielen has found beauty in sprawl. Starting with statistics, sifting through examples of sprawl across the US, he decided his selection and took helicopter flyovers to shoot them. Fast Company writer Ariel Schwartz commented: "He ended with beautiful aerial photographs of sprawl in all its geometric glory."

What exactly is a smart city?

In another Fast Company article, climate strategist Dr Boyd Cohen has asked, What exactly is a smart city? “I believe that the smart-cities movement is being held back by a lack of clarity & consensus around what a smart city is and what the components of a smart city actually are.” As well as giving his answer, he produces an annual top 10 smart cities (international), next version out soon.

In a posting on Planetizen last month, Jonathan Netter raised the question: What defines a city? “As anyone who’s raised an eyebrow upon hearing that Los Angeles is technically more dense than New York can attest, making city-to-city comparisons can be a confounding endeavour.” Nate Berg’s story at Atlantic Cities, In search of a uniform way to define the city, points to OECD research.

Research authors Monica Brezzi, Mario Piacentrini, Konstantin Rosina & Daniel Sanchez-Serra proposed the concept of “functional urban areas” based on population density & travel-to-work flows: “Basically, it’s a measurement of population & interconnected economies."

The research has specifically addressed:

The growing consensus that public policy should be concerned not only with the scale of urbanisation, but also with its geographic shape. The functioning & efficiency of linkages between cities, and those between urban & rural areas, can lead to important changes in how & where economic production takes placeThe role of large metropolitan areas in the global economy and their capacity to realise the benefits of economic agglomeration, industrial clustering & innovation.

Links:

Co.exist, The hidden beauty of suburban sprawl Christoph Gielen Co.exist, What exactly is a smart city? Co.exist, Smart cities top 10 Planetizen, What exactly is a smart city? Atlantic Cities, In search of a uniform way to define the city OECD, Redefining “urban”, a new way to measure metropolitan areas

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 26 August 2012

Contents:

Business Spectator, Why the carbon tax doesn’t work

Copenhagen Consensus Skeptical Environmentalist, opening pages Project Syndicate

Journalism.org

Exaro News

NZ Initiative

Roger Kerr, Friday graph

ShadowStats

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

21 August 2012:

I was surprised to see Business Spectator’s Bob Gottliebsen uncritically accept Bjørn Lomborg’s view yesterday on why the Australian carbon tax doesn’t work: “From my point of view, he is one of the first people I have heard who makes sense on carbon,” MrGottliebsen commented.

 

Bjørn Lomborg is a debunker of widely held ideas. Take this one, for example: “… concerns about global warming are the main reason that corn prices have skyrocketed since 2005. Nowadays 40% of corn grown in the US is used to produce ethanol, which does absolutely nothing for the climate, but certainly distorts the price of corn – at the expense of many of the world’s poorest people.”

 

Mr Lomborg is the author of The Skeptical Environmentalist, measuring the real state of the world (1998) & Cool It, head of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre and adjunct professor at Copenhagen Business School. His expertise was in cost:benefit analysis, which he’s translated to environmental issues. The Copenhagen Consensus Centre is a think-tank that publicises the best ways for governments & philanthropists to spend aid & development money…. In particular, we focus on the international community’s effort to solve the world’s biggest challenges and on how to do this in the most cost-efficient manner.”

He’s also a contributor to Project Syndicate, which describes itself as “a world of ideas….. offering incisive perspectives on our changing world from those who are shaping its economics, politics, science & culture”.

“One of the world’s biggest green-energy public-policy experiments is coming to a bitter end in Germany, with important lessons for policymakers elsewhere,” Bjørn Lomborg wrote in a Project Syndicate piece in February on Germany’s subsidies for solar energy.

Among other contributors, Nouriel Roubini wrote last week about Early retirement for the Eurozone. Professor Roubini was one of the few economists to predict the global financial crisis. He’s a professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business and chairman of Roubini Global Economics.

Links: Business Spectator, Why the carbon tax doesn’t work

Copenhagen Consensus Skeptical Environmentalist, opening pages Project Syndicate

20 August 2012:

The week starts with 2 news links, and some on economics….

First, a link to the new news-in-depth website interest.co.nz’s Bernard Hickey will head, launching on 1 November – “public-interest journalism funded by the public… a not-for-profit trust dedicated to supporting & building public-interest news, analysis, comment & debate”. And a UK news website that opened last October, Exaro News – “an online subscription service that investigates issues that are important to business in particular and to the public in general, but which are being inadequately covered – or ignored – by the mainstream media”.

Links: Journalism.org

Exaro News

Which, in due course, took me to the economy category of this website’s external links page (after a visit to interest.co, then a click on a story there). About time to update my Business Roundtable link, seeing that it merged with the NZ Institute in April to form the NZ Initiative.

Also in passing, I checked to see if Roger Kerr’s blog was still online, as he died last year. The blog’s still there, and his last posting, Friday graph: The myth that New Zealand’s net external indebtedness is a savings story, is worth returning to for a reminder of how far west of reality mainstream economics has veered.

I thought I had John Williams’ ShadowStats on the links page – it is now. I stopped believing most US statistics years ago, chiefly because the seasonal adjustments seemed so suspect, and consequently stopped presenting them here. John Williams, an economist for 4 decades, took to reviewing US Government statistics, doing his own analysis and creating his shadow version. He has the US unemployment rate around 23% compared to the Government’s figure – around 8%. He has CPI inflation at 5%, the Government has it below 2%.

Links: NZ Initiative

Roger Kerr, Friday graph

ShadowStats

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 19 August 2012

Contents:

Legal Street, just off Queen

Office Suites offers space in Wellington

Lively property views from Australia

UK progressive think tank

Looking back through my files, I see a backlog of links that haven’t quite been formatted right, finished off & posted. Not entirely surprising given the workload, something to remedy and, in the meantime, I’ll post a few new links today while the backlog stays where it is.

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

19 August 2012:

 

Legal Street, just off Queen

Lawyer David Beard began Legal Street 2 years ago, covering a wide range of services and an aim to solve problems, add value & reduce costs. He’s based just off Queen St, less than 100m from the Auckland District Court.

Link: Legal Street

Office Suites offers space in Wellington

Peter Dowell, of Heritage Property Group Ltd in Wellington, also runs Office Suites Ltd with space in 2 buildings in the capital, at Chews Lane and in Panama St.

Link: Office Suites

 

Lively property views from Australia

From Australia, 2 links for the Property Update website, one of them the main website and the other a blog by Michael Yardney. Also from Australia, the Property Observer is a lively news site.

Links: Property Update Property Investment Update blog Property Observer

 

UK progressive think tank

 

And from London, theInstitute for Public Policy Researchdescribes itself as “the UK’s leading progressive thinktank. We produce rigorous research & innovative policy ideas for a fair, democratic & sustainable world”.

Link: Institute for Public Policy Research

 

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 10 June 2012

Contents:

“You’ll never convince me…”

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

5 June 2012:

 

“You’ll never convince me…”

“Argue all you like, you’re never going to convince me….” You can apply that quote to any number of topics, but why is it so true?

An article on Online Opinion (Australia) yesterday – a repost of one on PJ Media (US) by Tom Harris (Ottawa) on 30 May – picks up on research published on the Nature website on 27 May. That in itself is a good example of viral opinions – views you agree with being spread worldwide, often much faster than the 8 days this one’s taken.

The research was on the subject of climate change, and how divisions of opinion are formed & changed. It needn’t have been that subject – you see the same sides taken in local politics, and even across political spectrums internationally. Hierarchies in Middle East dictatorships can hold similar views to those in the US. Green groups have taken time to gain a foothold because they’ve had to overcome entrenched commercial positions. In the first example, the entrenched hold out newcomers. In the second, the newcomers must demonstrate a more profitable outcome.

I didn’t look to see who Tom Harris was before reading his article (an Ottawa-based mechanical engineer, he’s executive director of the International Climate Science Coalition). He wrote: “A person’s cultural & social worldview have more impact on determining their opinion on global warming than any other factor.”

That was a quicker way to the point than the Nature website’s story on its research, which suggested “that public divisions over climate change stem not from the public’s incomprehension of science but from a distinctive conflict of interest: between the personal interest individuals have in forming beliefs in line with those held by others with whom they share close ties and the collective one they all share in making use of the best available science to promote common welfare”.

The research won’t lessen the shouting at opponents in the climate change debate, mightn’t lead to any change at all. But I’ve been amused to see how position-taking along the lines of this research has shaken out in local politics in Auckland. When Len Brown was elected mayor of the new super-city in 2010, he didn’t do what many predecessors have done and try to ensure “his side” of politics would maintain control of the important committees, but told the new councillors to write down what committees & forums they wanted to be on. Membership wasn’t limited.

Left & right quickly sorted themselves according to their favoured topics so, as you would expect, the left is dominant on social topics and the right on economic. This is not always smart – sometimes what you’re least interested in can have a greater impact on outcomes than you’d realised.

Links: Nature Climate Change, The polarising impact of science literacy and numeracy on perceived climate change risks

PJ Media, Climate change: why do the facts fail to convince?

Online Opinion, Climate change: why do the facts fail to convince?

Climate Science Coalition

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 20 May 2012

Contents:

New York looks at convention centre makeover or shift to racetrack venue

New design centre to focus on urban projects

First-timer’s view of Congress for New Urbanism

Research reveals international generic shape of urban rail networks

Mixed-use neighbourhood, stadiums, park, a tram, but waterfront formula looks wrong

Latest from RICS internationally

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

20 May 2012:

New York looks at convention centre makeover or shift to racetrack venue

$350 million for a new convention centre, paid for by the neighbouring casino company in return for an increase in the gambling licence? Cheap. That’s Auckland, but New York is talking a $US463 million makeover for the 25-year-old Javits Centre – or maybe a $US3 billion underwrite from Malaysian gambling company Genting for a new 300,000m² convention centre on a Queens racetrack, and bowling the 60,000m² Javits centre.

In Architectural Record, under the sub-heading Despite declining attendance & revenue, many cities are expanding convention centres or building new ones, Fred Bernstein wrote about the New York options – and also about the state of the convention market elsewhere in the US.

Across in Los Angeles, Dennis Kaiser wrote on the Urban Land Institute website about the development of the LA Live facilities, starting with the Staples Centre in 1999.

Links: Architectural Record, Straying from convention

Urban Land Institute, Investment for AEG catalyst for world-class convention destination

New design centre to focus on urban projects

The J Max Bond Centre on Design for the Just City opened on 1 May at the Spitzer School of Architecture, City College of New York. It’s named after architect Max Bond, who died in 2009, and is described as “a reinvigorated recast of the City College Architecture Centre that operated in the 1980s & ’90s primarily as a pro bono architecture & planning service for the Harlem community”.

The new centre will focus more on faculty & collaborative research, will initiate urban projects engaging with policy reform that could become models for other cities, and have an active conference, publication & events programme.

Links: The Architect’s Newspaper, Walk this way

Planetizen, Urban equity to be focus of new academic centre

First-timer’s view of Congress for New Urbanism

The Congress for New Urbanism held its 20th annual conference last week, an event captured by urban designer Erin Chantry, attending for the first time. "I knew there was the possibility that CNU20 would be an exercise in brainwashing. After all, the movement certainly has this reputation from its critics. But I was pleasantly surprised to find just the opposite,” she wrote on a company blog picked up by Planetizen.

Links: Planetizen, At 20, CNU gets a fresh look

Tindale-Oliver & Associates, Erin Chantry reports

Research reveals international generic shape of urban rail networks

In Auckland, we do a metropolitan rail network by creating the branches then, after decades, think of finishing the core. Will we finish it? The mayor, Len Brown, remained adamant during a brief discussion with me about it on Friday that the loop to finish the city core would happen (more on that in a story on Monday).

But what do other cities do? Statistical physicist Marc Barthelemy, of France’s National Centre for Scientific Research, & associates wrote in the abstract for their research paper in Journal of the Royal Society Interface: “We study the temporal evolution of the structure of the world’s largest subway networks in an exploratory manner. We show that, remarkably, all these networks converge to a shape that shares similar generic features despite their geographical & economic differences. This limiting shape is made of a core with branches radiating from it.”

In Wired Science’s story, Brandon Keim write that, “in the absence of top-down central planning, their movement over decades toward a common mathematical space may hint at universal principles of human self-organisation….

“Patterns emerged: The core-&-branch topology, of course, and patterns more fine-grained. Roughly half the stations in any subway will be found on its outer branches rather than the core. The distance from a city’s centre to its farthest terminus station is twice the diameter of the subway system’s core. This happens again & again.”

Journal of the Royal Society Interface is the society’s cross-disciplinary publication promoting research at the interface between the physical and life sciences.

Links: Toward a universal subway typology

Wired Science, World’s subways converging on ideal form Royal Society, A long time limit for world subway networks Journal of the Royal Society Interface

Mixed-use neighbourhood, stadiums, park, a tram, but waterfront formula looks wrong

A new mixed-use neighbourhood between riverfront stadiums, a generous new waterfront park and a new tramline connecting them to the cbd – these are elements of transformation for Cincinnati to make it a city young people want to work in, companies want to be part of.

The mayor, Mark Mallory, said in a video for Smart Growth America: “We’ve got to be able to attract & retain young people, and we’ve got to be able to attract & maintain the companies that are going to create jobs. People are looking for public transportation when they are deciding which city they want to be in. They are looking for public infrastructure to be in place. All the elements you see in larger cities that are stable, that have growing populations, we are trying to incorporate into Cincinnati so we can level the playing field."

Extraordinary, then, that this prized new area should be cordoned off by motorway spaghetti, in all likelihood making the new business precinct an inefficiently isolated area and the park one that cbd workers will not find it easy to amble across to over their lunch break.

It’s an example, therefore, of transformation that could still occur in Auckland – the Wynyard Quarter has the potential for isolation because of the Fanshawe St barrier, its tramline so far is a gimmick rather than something locals will use for A-B transport, the notion of a waterfront stadium is being raised again – with the warning by the Blues’ performance this season that a 40,000-plus-capacity stadium might only rarely be wanted, in an age when diversity of interests will naturally reduce the regular audience for any sporting competition.

Links: Planetizen, In praise of Cincinnati’s progressive urbanism

The Architect’s Newspaper, Getting it right in the Queen City

Latest from RICS internationally

The RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) global real estate weekly updates can be reached from this link: RICS, grew.

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 12 February 2012

Contents:

National’s economic development action plan

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

12 February 2012:

 

National’s economic development action plan

 

Prime Minister John Key opened up shop for the year with a reminder of National’s 120-point economic development action plan.

Lots of it is already in place or in progress – only 26 of the 120 points are new policy. The big one for this year is the sell-off of state assets, essentially using equity from capital-raising to fund development of new assets without increasing overseas borrowing.

In transport, the roads programme will continue, the upgrade & electrification of Auckland’s rail will continue but the inner-city rail loop is not in the programme. Auckland will get that loop only by creating its own imaginative funding mechanisms and by devising daring property schemes, or by somehow putting a confident government over a barrel.

In property, new policies include a 6-month time limit on consenting of medium-sized projects and a simpler planning process between resource management, transport & local government.

Parliament opens for business on Tuesday, with resumption of the address-in-reply debate and a long list of bills, mostly picking up where the previous parliamentary session left off. You can check the sectors diary or daily diary for the bills which I think have property, commerce & finance relevance, and keep an eye on the diaries through the year to check their progress.

Links: National’s economic development plan

Bob Dey Property Report daily diary, Tuesday 14 February 2012

Sectors Diary for the week to 19 February 2012

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Snapshot on links, week to 13 November 2011

Contents:

Bank seeks views on Basel III

Construkt hires

Wes Edwards’ passion for urban design

Political watchdog collates manifestos

There are more than 1100 direct links to external websites on the Bob Dey Property Report links page. If your site’s listed on the Useful links page, please let me know when you introduce new material. If it’s not listed and it should be, send me an email: [email protected].

10 November 2011:

Bank seeks views on Basel III

The Reserve Bank released a consultation paper on Tuesday on the implementation of Basel III capital adequacy requirements in New Zealand and wants submissions back by 27 January.

 

Deputy governor Grant Spencer said the bank proposed to adopt most of the proposals, except for those that are less conservative than already in place or aren’t suited to New Zealand circumstances.

Link: Reserve Bank consultation paper, Basel III capital adequacy requirements implementation

9 November 2011:

Construkt hires

 

Construkt Architects Ltd, headed by David Gibbs, has just hired a number of graduates and has upgraded its website, focusing on the theme “shaping space” – doing that in urban design as well is in individual buildings, so I’ve added Construkt to the urban design section of this website’s links page as well.

Link: Construkt Architects

Wes Edwards’ passion for urban design

Chartered engineer Wes Edwards established Wes Edwards Consulting Ltd in Auckland in 2002, with “a particular interest in best practice urban design and designing liveable streets – residential streets that promote low traffic speeds and that are nice to live in…. We have a passion for making better places, better streets & better cities.  We specialise in urban masterplanning & street design, achieving balanced solutions for all users of the street or neighbourhood – streets for people.”   Beyond that, the professional traffic engineering, transport planning & urban design consultancy offers a range of services.

Link: Wes Edwards Consulting

Political watchdog collates manifestos

 

Muriel Newman’s NZ Centre for Political Research has collated all the parties’ election manifestos plus their opening broadcasts.

Link: Election manifestos

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Attribution: Compiled & story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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