Michael Hathorne, CNUa

In the story of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” aside from learning that breaking and entering is still a crime, even when it’s a home inhabited by a bear family with human-like characteristics, there is an even more important principle that we can learn. I like to refer to it as the “Baby Bear metric.” The porridge, chair and bed of the Bear family’s mother and father are too hot, too cold, too big, too small, too hard, and too soft. As Goldilocks moves through the house of the Three Bears she finds that everything belonging to the family’s baby bear happens to be “just right” for her. This idea is applicable to any of a number of things in life. The same thing, depending on such things as context, scale and size can be off to a user, but when slight adjustments are made it can then be found to be “just right.”

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A. Paul Glauser, AICP - CNU Utah Board Member

At its annual Chapter Meeting on November 2, 2017, CNU Utah recognized several Utah projects and people that have exemplified particularly well the principles in the Charter of the New Urbanism. This is the first in a series of blog posts highlighting these award winners. Downtown Provo’s historic Center Street area has been enjoying an exciting resurgence in recent years. Yet the block immediately east of University Avenue, north side of Center, had a gnawing problem which impeded its recovery: in the 1980s two movie theaters had been demolished in the name of renewal, and both sites had languished for decades as surface parking lots – two glaring gaps in the street façade which compromised the block’s ability to attract walking traffic.

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Reid Ewing, Ph.D.

Shima Hamidi, a former doctoral student of mine and now assistant professor at the University of Texas at Arlington, may be the most prolific young planning academic in the country. A year and a half after graduation, she already has 24 articles published in many of the leading journals and another eight under review. Much of her research relates directly or indirectly to polycentric development. It’s a topic that I’ve been thinking quite a bit about lately.

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Ivis Garcia Zambrana, PhD, AICP

With no communication, it took a whole week for me to hear from my family in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria—the worst natural disaster that has ever befallen the island since 1928. My family told me that they are ‘ok’, even though they do not have electric power or water. Their situation was not unique, 92% and 55% of islanders do not have electric power or water, respectively.

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Jon Larsen, PE - CNU Utah Board Chair

Until we slow down cars, people will continue to die in crashes on our streets. It’s that simple. We’ve tasked our engineers with the impossible: maintaining traffic speeds as fast as possible while at the same time asking them to keep everyone safe. As a society, we’re in denial about the fact that we can’t have both. Something has got to give.

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Ivis Garcia Zambrana, PhD, AICP

The goal of the Paint the Pavement program is to increase connections between artists and residents through placemaking. Cities across the nation have implemented Paint the Pavement projects including Portland, Seattle and Boulder. Salt Lake City developed a permit program in 2012 for the program, but did not get any takers for several years. The Rose Park Community Council made history in Salt Lake City by installing the first Paint the Pavement project last May on the intersection of 800 N & American Beauty Drive.

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Ari Bruening, JD, AICP

Transit-oriented development is happening in a big way in Utah, and the benefits are huge. In 1999, Envision Utah released the Quality Growth Strategy. It provided a vision, goals, and strategies to achieve what Utahns wanted as we grew. And what did tens of thousands of Utahns say they wanted? More light rail and compact, walkable development around rail stations. So Utah set out to deliver exactly that. Utah built 140 miles of passenger rail: TRAX, FrontRunner, and the S Line. In fact, we built rail faster than anywhere in America. 

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Michael Hathorne, CNUa

Have you ever considered the relationship between people and places? What impact do they have on each other? Can they be viewed as separate pieces or are they two pieces which are dependent upon each other in order to create a working whole? The scary scenes we create for horror movies say a lot about what we find ideal, and what we dislike, in the places where people live.

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J. Kirby Snideman, AICP

Proponents of pedestrian friendly design often advocate for retail parking lots to be placed in the rear; behind retail buildings and away from roadways. Moving parking lots to the rear concentrates people and places along the street, creating an environment that is arguably more attractive and better scaled for walkers and bicyclists. While this seems advantageous, retail developers are often opposed to this layout. This article examines a few reasons why. Understanding the concerns of retail developers will help community leaders and stakeholders find practical solutions when priorities differ. 

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