Setting Your Watch

I’m almost embarrassed for the host of the Capitol Watch podcast from the Hartford Courant. I mean, I wish Springfield and Masslive had anything even remotely similar with a focus on the city and urban issues. It is still the case that, even with the multi-million dollar headquarters and broadcasting center of New England Public

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Dare not Speak its Name

Unless they’ve had some contact with their art in one of my colleague’s classes, most of my students have never heard of Diego Velázquez and Francisco de Goya. They’ve heard of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Picasso (who they think is French), and perhaps one or two others, but almost never Velázquez and Goya.  After explaining

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Fútbol Goes Parabolic

(Click on the link) Some things just don’t make any sense. Until they do. In the world’s most popular team sport the English Premier League was already statistically Europe’s strongest league when it suddenly was infused with more TV money than any other league could have hoped for. It was clear that the next decade

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Death Warmed Over

Two weeks ago I woke up without my voice. I missed two days of work and spent the weekend convalescing. After pushing through a full week at school I was presented with one of the most glorious days of this heretofore wet and chilly spring; It was the Saturday of Springfield’s birthday celebration (#383) and

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Gary, Indiana

The algorithms that select videos for me on YouTube demonstrated their accuracy last week by placing a documentary on Gary, Indiana at the front of my cue. It wasn’t the most recent nor the highest quality footage I’ve ever seen, but it was produced by a filmmaker whose perspective I recognize in myself.  Gary, Indiana

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A Boom in Busts

All of a sudden I find myself as actively engaged as I ever have been in some activities which promise to make positive change in the city. I was participating with a relatively small group of stakeholders in a conversation about place making at the Apremont Triangle and I realized I was enmeshed in a

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The Spoke in Your Own Eye

My bike gave me my first sense of autonomy as a kid. Looking back on a childhood spent without a phone and without GoogleMaps I have to suppose that I used primitive technology like paper maps or my own memory to get from my house to a friend’s house. The useful world got a little

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Retail

Just after the financial collapse of 2008 many of the same people who had warned of the residential real estate bubble bursting started to warn of a bust in commercial real estate. Long before the Amazon Effect or Cyber Monday it was being pointed out that the United States had, in particular, orders of magnitude

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Not on the List

The interplay of data and personal experience are what I use to understand what’s happening to my community. What I glean from my own experience of course tends to be too narrow to wholly depend on, and most of the data I can find is often too broad to be sure just how accurate it

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The Belgian Bronze

Any long time reader of Rational Urbanism who is eager for me to get back to my roots will be happy to know that I’m about to repeat an old favorite. Overwhelmingly, when someone writing about urban issues, white flight, gentrification, and topics of that ilk uses the words “bad schools” or “good schools”, they

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