by Priya Madrecki, Senior Manager, Strategic Communications, KaBOOM! //
Oftentimes the most poignant childhood memories are the simplest ones: playing in the backyard with a sibling, learning baseball with a parent, or going to the playground after school. And, frequently, those memories involve play. Play is a critical component to healthy development, and to simply being a kid. It sets the stage for helping kids to achieve their highest potential, and provides those essential, formative moments with friends and adults. It cultivates social skills, greater self-confidence, risk-taking opportunities and the chance to live a healthier lifestyle. Today’s kids deserve each and every one of those benefits linked to play. But for many kids, particularly those living in poverty, having time and access to daily play is a challenge. So how do we provide more opportunities for play by turning everyday spaces into PLAYces?
By Daniel Drees, Cleveland Foundation Summer City Fellow, CEOs for Cities //
Jeff Speck’s book, Walkable City, might have been published in 2012, but his ideas are still revolutionizing American cities. It’s not written for the car-dependant urban dweller. If you are adamant about continuing your white-knuckled commute, then you will not be friends with this book. If you think that people on bikes ruin the roads in your city or you might only consider the bus an option if your car breaks down, you will not like what Speck has to say about walkability, bikeability, and transit. Speck’s steps to achieve a walkable city are unapologetic odes to those for whom cities were first designed: the people.
by Traci Pollard, Brooklyness //
Commuting by bike, it seems, would be a no-brainer. It’s great for health and physical fitness, it’s fairly inexpensive and it’s good for the environment. So why don’t we see more of it in our urban centers? Especially in NYC.
We are Brooklyness, a boutique bike brand based out of Brooklyn. We design, and market products for urban mobility. Our products are practical solutions that are crafted to provide comfort and style for the urban commuter, focusing not just on bicycles, but the riding experience as a whole. We’ve done extensive research on some of the obstacles that have kept commuters from adopting a bike as a solution. “Millions of Americans commute less than 10 miles each day, but getting from home to work is usually inefficient”, states our CEO, Manuel Saez. Here are some of, what we believe, are reasons that people are reluctant to adopt commuting by bike.
by Daniel Regan, Vice President, Kanbar Properties //
A little over a decade ago, Tulsa experienced something of a renaissance. I had just moved back to my hometown after living in Costa Rica for a year, and it was clear that the community’s focus had shifted. More exciting was the fact that this change was being led by an energetic group of young leaders who recognized that WE have the ability to shape our lovely metropolitan riverfront community into whatever it is we want. A novel idea began to take hold – “placemaking” (even if we didn’t know what it was at the time) was a participatory activity.
by David N. Ginsburg, President + CEO, Downtown Cincinnati Inc. //
Summer is a wonderful season for re-reading old books and taking long, contemplative walks with my dogs and a good cigar. This past weekend I (re)discovered Comeback Cities by Paul Grogan and Tony Proscio. This seminal book was written in 2000 when we were only first beginning to see the revival, repopulation, reinvestment and renaissance in American Cities. After years of decline and disinvestment, the book struck me as somewhere between visionary and wishful thinking at the time.