National Links: Online Shopping Promised Reduced Traffic

Every day at The Overhead Wire we collect news about cities and send the links to our email list.  At the end of the week we take some of the most popular stories and post them to Greater Greater Washington, a group blog similar to that focuses on urban issues in the DC region.  They are national links, sometimes entertaining and sometimes absurd, but hopefully useful.

Homeowner ordered to rebuild original house: In a move to dissuade developers from demolishing homes in San Francisco without permission, the city’s planning commission has voted to require a homeowner to build an exact replica of a destroyed home designed by Richard Neutra. The homeowner will also be required to furnish a sidewalk plaque that tells the story of Neutra, the demolition, and replica. (Brock Keeling | Curbed SF)

The promise of online shopping was reduced traffic: Online shopping was supposed to keep everyone off the roads, but it turned out that purchases done one at a time add more trips and more congestion to busy streets. From 1963 to 2009 freight levels stayed relatively stable at 1 trip per 10 residents. But after 2009 that number has shot up to 2.5 freight trips per 10 residents, a number that experts say is not sustainable. (Edward Humes | Time Magazine)

Oregon could ban single family zoning in cities over 10,000 population: The speaker of the Oregon House is drafting legislation that would allow up to four homes on areas zoned single family in places with more than 10,000 residents. After Minneapolis’ move, this seems to be the next big thing. (Rachel Monahan | Willamette Week)

Churches and non-profits confront new parking tax regulations: The recent tax cut bill has led to many non-profits, churches, and other usually exempt organizations to think more about the cost of parking. The complicated new rules made parking benefits these organizations provide taxable, and many will decide to drop reserved spaces and open the lots up to the public to avoid the tax. (Brian Faler | Politico)

Nashville’s rising star: The city of Nashville has thrived over the last decade, bringing it to the top of a midsized cities competition going on around the country. Comparisons to cities like Birmingham show how investments, branding, and historic circumstances can lead to more opportunities to create a dynamic economy while also revealing uneven growth spurts. (Ben Casselman | New York Times)

Quote of the Day

“If Americans did sort themselves according to their desires, there would be an exodus from the big cities and, to a lesser degree, from small cities and towns, accompanying a movement to rural areas.”

Gallup’s Frank Newportin the Washington Post discussing a new Gallop survey of American’s feelings towards cities and rural areas.

This week on the Talking Headways podcast we talk with Arizona State professor Deborah Salon about the specifics of location value capture.

Jeff Wood

About Jeff Wood

Jeff Wood is an urban planner focused on transportation and land use issues living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area. Jeff blogs at The Overhead Wire and tweets @theoverheadwire. He also shares news links daily from around the country on issues related to cities at The Direct Transfer