Category: Transit

A desire named streetcar: Part 3, the charm of idling

26 October, 2012 (09:19) | Boston, Cities, Light rail, Portland, Samuel Scheib, Streetcars, Theory, TOD, Transit |

By:David A. Smith   [Continued from yesterday’s Part 2 and the preceding Part 1.]   In the first age of streetcars, 1875 to 1925, as documented by Samuel L. Scheib in Reason (October, 2012), they revolutionized cities as a form of efficient, clean, cheap urban transport – and in remaking cities, they enabled us to […]

A desire named streetcar: Part 2, the defect of congestion

25 October, 2012 (10:17) | Boston, Cities, Light rail, Portland, Samuel Scheib, Streetcars, Theory, TOD, Transit |

By:David A. Smith   [Continued from yesterday’s Part 1.]   Yesterday, using as source material a discursive exposition by Samuel L. Scheib in Reason (October, 2012), we traveled through the birth, apex, and rapid decline of America’s streetcars as urban transport.  Now we enter the modern era, and here the grid networks of America and […]

A desire named streetcar: Part 1, the virtue of speed

24 October, 2012 (15:57) | Boston, Cities, Light rail, Portland, Samuel Scheib, Streetcars, Theory, TOD, Transit |

By:David A. Smith   Usually packed, by the way   Tourists like to idle through a city.      Commuters want to groove through it.     Perhaps that idealization of the perky tourist hub is the reason so many cities have become expensively enamored of streetcars, trolleys, or light rail (pick your expression, they’re […]

Sprawl: the Portland experiment, Part 2

27 February, 2006 (09:37) | Portland, Transit |

[Continued from last Wednesday’s Part 1]   If Portland‘s growth management has had the unintended effect of creating work traffic congestion, why don’t Portland‘s citizens use its touted mass transit?   With transit use accounting for less than 2% of all trips in the region, it remains a fairly negligible factor in the vast majority […]

Sprawl: the Portland experiment, Part 1

22 February, 2006 (11:35) | Cities, Portland, Transit |

Having already mined Robert Bruegmann’s fascinating Sprawl: A Compact History for disproofs (Part 1 and Part 2) and insights about cities, I want to finish with his examination of Portland, Oregon‘s thirty-year experiment in what might be called a monetarist approach to land use: The Portland Postulate Restrict supply and you will manage growth and […]