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21 articles

Are balconies an intrinsic value?

Even as a child, I can recall the family trips down to Florida or South Carolina, witnessing all those high-rise apartment and condo buildings, each one of which had its own balcony.  Sometimes two.  And I remember noticing how there never seemed to be anyone out using them.  Needless to say, I didn’t understand real

Urban autumn: when a single favored tree like the gingko provides all the leaf-peeping a city needs.

The introduction of landscaping into densely populated urban settings has always been a thorny issue, pun fully intended.  Steeped in emissions and incarcerated by impervious surfaces, plant life across urban environments typically only thrives against the odds.  Certain flora that can flourish in a suburban front yard are scarce in downtown settings, for obvious reasons:

Building back a better bike rack: do the creative ones keep your two wheels safe?

Over the last three decades, as bicycles have become a more commonly accepted means of getting around—especially in areas where they previously were a rare sight—the need to accommodate them when “docked” is more important.  Sure, it’s usually perfectly reasonable to lock a bike to anything that’s already bolted to the ground: a parking meter,

Birds as drone surveillance ?

Winged, feathered drone surveillance: if all birds are corrupted, why not insects as well?

To celebrate the spooky season just a little bit on the late side, I’ll abstain from references to zombies, werewolves, or blood-thirsty vampires.  That’s the stuff of Hollywood.  I’ll hold off from massive jack-o’-lanterns, witches crashing into buildings, enormous spiders, or the arched backs of black cats.  Those seem to be the status quo for

bark park at The Blairs apartments, Silver Spring MD

Pint sized bark parks: when an undefined patch of land is going to the dogs.

I’m not sure what it is, but something about the downtown to the unincorporated Washington DC suburb of Sliver Spring, Maryland seems have spawned a number of unusual urban forms: acute angles, bizarre protrusions, and neglected little corners.  I’ve written about this once before: how a building’s orientation and street frontage created a little storefront

Corona goes corporate: how the service sector faces a disease, as measured by the local friendly office park.

As the recovery from the economic ravages inflicted by COVID-19 lumbers haltingly forward, it’s obvious even to the unattuned that some industries are bouncing back more nimbly than others. Having chronicled the malaise of retail numerous times, including well before anyone knew that coronavirus would define the year 2020, it’s obvious that the imposed lockdowns only…

Are balconies an intrinsic value?

Even as a child, I can recall the family trips down to Florida or South Carolina, witnessing all those high-rise apartment and condo buildings, each one of which had its own balcony.  Sometimes

Corona goes corporate: how the service sector faces a disease, as measured by the local friendly office park.

As the recovery from the economic ravages inflicted by COVID-19 lumbers haltingly forward, it’s obvious even to the unattuned that some industries are bouncing back more nimbly than others. Having chronicled the malaise of retail numerous times, including well before anyone knew that coronavirus would define the year 2020, it’s obvious that the imposed lockdowns only…