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Potty protections.

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We’ve come to expect a certain iconography at our airports: restrooms, baggage claims, handicapped access, information centers, baby-changing stations, cabs. Less common: subways, light rail, prayer rooms, and, in this day and age, a smoker refuge. Perhaps I’m revealing my East Coast bias—or at least my tendency to orient myself in terms of where I …Read more…

Vesuvius erupts in the prairie.

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In the world’s most overbuilt nation for retail space, any outside influence can induce an infinitesimal change that nonetheless completely transforms the landscape for commerce.  The retailers who continue to succeed in this economy—particularly impressive given the growing portent of online shopping’s eventual dominance—help shed light on what type of structures/milieus they are seeking to …Read more…

Amidst all the links in the chain, a new shape emerges.

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When zipping across a rural landscape on a limited access highway, the visual impact of the exit ramps—and the various goods or services that they access—begin to erode.  To those unfamiliar with the landscape, these exits often all look alike. Even for those motorists who know their precise surroundings, it would be hard to describe …Read more…

Drive-thru service…to (or at) your door.

One of the most intense work months of my career has just come to an end, and it’s been obvious that it has prevented me from devoting as much time and thought to my already meager average of two blog posts a month. And I conclude September with another short(ish) post on an observation I …Read more…

MONTAGE: Curbing destruction by rethreading the button.

I’m back from a lengthy time away from Afghanistan and have been trying to plug away at another blog article that incorporates infrastructure from several different countries, as well as the implications on American energy efficiency. But, as is often the case, a shortage of good, specific photos has become my Achilles’ heel. I will …Read more…