Amazon is one of the most urbanist employers in America

Who says Jeff Bezos doesn’t do corporate synergy? Amazon’s announcement that they’re looking for a second headquarters in North America has exploded the market for hot takes about cities, which is probably giving at least some benefit to the Bezos-owned Washington Post. While I do think that Philadelphia would be a very good fit for […]

The pros and cons of SEPTA’s King of Prussia Rail

SEPTA’s King of Prussia Rail project has finally selected a Locally Preferred Alternative, and much to my surprise, the winner was not the elevated alignment over US 202, but rather the alignment alongside the PECO transmission line and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. There’s a lot to take in, so I’ll just hit the top five highlights on each side. […]

New Year / New Mayor Resolutions for 2016

It’s a time of new beginnings, and hopes for a better future!  Or at least, trying to be better than we are now, in ways that will fade along with our newly-renewed gym memberships. In no particular order: No more “SEPTA Key is Late” complaints.   It’s very late.  We all know it’s very late.  We […]

Visualizing parking is the first step to resolving parking politics

A new map shows exactly which block faces in Philadelphia require the pittance of $35/year to keep a car on them. The terms of parking politics in this city may never be the same. Lauren Ancona’s previous magnum opus was a map showing the boundaries of the PPA parking permit districts, a work that landed […]

Jobs, job access, and building a strong, solvent city

I went to Young Involved Philadelphia’s City Council Candidate Convention last night.  As I talked directly with many of the candidates, there was a common refrain among many of them: “The city needs to rebuild its tax base by bringing more jobs back into the city.”  (The policy conclusions each candidates drew from that premise varied, of course.) […]

Pittsburgh is the competition. Let’s steal their best idea: free student and faculty transit

Last spring, I waxed rhapsodic on the similarities between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, while calling for strengthening the transportation ties between the two cities. But today, I want to recast the Steel City as villain, not hero. Let’s take the Yinzers, for the moment, as our municipal rivals for our most precious resource: human capital. Because […]

Why TOD is superior to park-and-ride

Devin Turner, Friend of the Blog, is up with an article on this old city about the promise of transit-oriented development (TOD) along the Haddon Avenue corridor in South Jersey, and why DRPA should be looking to redevelop its massive parking lots along the PATCO line. But something Devin glossed over (because it’s old hat […]

Longform Sunday: Freedom vs. the Opposite of Freedom

Good morning everyone. I’ve got this post set to go up early this morning, because I have two really big, really important asks on your time today that really need to go together. So I’m setting the timer early so you have plenty of time to watch, read, and process. The first is this video […]

Don’t let anyone tell you we’re not winning

Key passage from Jared Brey’s writeup of the City Planning Commission blessing the plans for Comcast II: [Liberty Property Trust’s John] Gattuso said that Liberty’s “biggest miss” in building the first Comcast tower—the soon-to-be second-tallest building in the city—was not including enough bicycle parking. The new tower will include spaces for approximately 175 bikes, Gattuso […]

Council looking to raise PPA permit fees from negligible to trifling

After three years of never needing one because I lived in Point Breeze, last week I trekked down the Broad Ridge Spur to the Philadelphia Parking Authority’s new Customer Service Center, to apply for a Residential Parking Permit. The lady behind the window was very confused; my block doesn’t actually have permit parking, but Girard […]