Weekly Snapshot

March 4, 2011
The Weekly Snapshot is a look back at a few of the most compelling stories in the world of urban planning and policy
Presidio Landmark Tour. [Photo by Colleen McHugh]


In Venezuela Housing Crisis, Squatters Find 45-Story Walkup

Venezuela's 45-story "Tower of David," a skyscraper which began construction in the height of the economic boom, was once a symbol of the country's entrepreneurial spirt. Now, following the financial crisis, the uncompleted tower is home to more than 2,500 squatters.

Silicon Valley's Public Transit Will Become More Tech-Friendly
In an attempt to lure Silicon Valley employees to use public transportation, the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority is proposing the addition of "tech-friendly" luxury buses, complete with wi-fi, gourmet snacks, and even a concierge to coordinate dry-cleaning services.

Twitter Data in Cities-Seeking Spatial Patterns
Fabian Neuhaus's study on Twitter-use patterns combines social media with urban planning to explore what Twitter usage can reveal about a city.

Harlem's PS90
Forty years after its abandonment, Harlem's Public School 90 gets a residential makeover, demonstrating that in the world of adaptive reuse "good bones can make for a successful surgery."

New Taser Zaps Car Cell Phones
Taser is addressing the "epidemic" of distracted driving with a new technology that would temporarily disable drivers' cell phones while they are behind the wheel.