SPUR’s 31st annual Good Government Awards, held earlier this year, honored five City of San Francisco employees and teams who have performed exceptionally, becoming models for other agencies and cities around the country.
April 19, 2011
April 8, 2011
Skyways -- enclosed, elevated sidewalks -- have protected pedestrians from the brutal weather in Minneapolis and St. Paul for decades. But these 1970s relics have also been accused of killing pedestrian activity on city streets.
April 6, 2011
After threats to reduce service by nearly half, Caltrain officials last night agreed to scale back their drastic proposed cuts. The rail system’s governing agencies have brokered a deal to avoid the worst-case scenario, which would have run only 48 trains on weekdays, a dramatic drop from the current 86.
April 4, 2011
While the Bay Area is still climbing out of the great recession, we’re simultaneously experiencing the makings of a second dot-com boom. The Chronicle reports that tech jobs have climbed near to their year 2000 peak of 34,116. Silicon Valley is hiring again. And so is San Francisco.
April 4, 2011
Known for its quality of life and access to nature, Seattle has long prided itself on refusing to be “world class.” But rapid growth and a diversifying population mean Seattle is changing — whether it wants to or not.
March 31, 2011
The City of San Francisco owns 1,625 parcels of unmaintained paved land, odd alley-like spaces behind industrial buildings and beneath overpasses. Most are no wider than a city street, but together they have a combined surface area half the size of Golden Gate Park.
March 30, 2011
Co-working studio [Photo by flickr user ahopsi]
According to a piece in Sunday’s Chronicle, tech employment in San Francisco is approaching its dot-com peak:
March 16, 2011
If the Fiscal Year 2011 budget debate in Washington has been dramatic, it has also unfolded utterly predictably. But though threats to HSR funding were foreseeable, their ultimate effect is still highly uncertain.
March 15, 2011
Several weeks ago, I attended a briefing at the SFCTA on the progress of the Van Ness Bus Rapid Transit project. BRT along Van Ness is currently in the midst of final environmental studies and preliminary engineering. Public comment will be solicited this spring on the Environmental Impact Report, after which the project team will recommend a preferred alternative for adoption by the Authority and SFMTA boards.
March 11, 2011
The Association of Bay Area Governments and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission released their Initial Vision Scenario for growth in the Bay Area at a meeting in Oakland today. By 2035, the scenario assumes the Bay Area will grow by 2 million people (to 9.4 million) and 1.2 million jobs (to 4.5 million).
March 11, 2011
Largest Mall in the World is a Chinese Ghost Town
The world's largest mall, located in Southern China, is a vast ghost land with occupancy rates that hover at 1%. The mall, built to serve what may someday become a Chinese mega-city, is a glimpse at what can occur when development precedes growth.
March 8, 2011
The San Francisco County Transportation Authority is working on an update to the city’s Long Range Transportation Plan. As part of the update, the authority has been conducting analysis of transportation patterns in the city, and looking at projected growth, and its implications.
March 2, 2011
Plans for Treasure Island are moving forward to the Planning Commission in March. SPUR is a big supporter of this plan, which will create 8,000 units of housing, 30 percent of which will be affordable, and 450,000 square feet of retail space; rehabilitate historic structures; create 300 acres of open space; and add new ferry service. We especially like the way in which the proposed new development is clustered around the new ferry terminal, as opposed to dispersed across the island.
February 28, 2011
Beginning this month, Californians will have a new option for auto insurance. It’s called Pay As You Drive (PAYD), and it could save money and reduce our impact on the environment at the same time.
February 21, 2011
The next several weeks in Washington promise to offer extremely important insights into the future of public transportation spending in this country. Watershed moments are ahead for most every item on the SPUR agenda. Here’s a quick primer of why and of what’s at stake for advocates of smart growth:
February 17, 2011
February 10, 2011
San Francisco might be the cultural center of the region, but in the technology sector the city has generally played second fiddle to the Silicon Valley. That began to change during the dot-com boom and then again more recently, a new generation of startups is setting up in neighborhoods like SoMa and Potrero Hill. (SPUR discussed the trend in its “year in urbanism” recap.)