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Salt Lake City project

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  • Lloyd Wright
    Although not carfree, an interesting project near Salt Lake City in the US... http://www.enn.com/today.html?id=10219 Environmentally Conscious Megasuburb
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 7, 2006
      Although not carfree, an interesting project near Salt Lake City in the US...


      Environmentally Conscious Megasuburb Planned Near Salt Lake City

      April 07, 2006 — By Paul Foy, Associated Press
      WEST JORDAN, Utah — It's a plan for development that will take more than 50
      years from start to finish, on the largest piece of privately owned land next
      to a U.S. metropolis for an expected half-million residents.

      This megasuburb, twice the size of San Francisco, will be the work of a mining
      company, Kennecott Utah Copper Corp., which has no experience in real-estate

      The Utah company is a subsidiary of London-based Rio Tinto, a mining
      multinational and avowed convert to environmentalism, which decided to make a
      showcase out of its surplus Utah lands instead of just selling them off for
      cookie-cutter subdivisions.

      Home builders were skeptical when the Salt Lake valley's biggest landowner
      laid out the plan for a 20-mile string of densely packed, "walkable"
      communities framing the rural west side of Salt Lake County. The communities
      would be laid out along a planned highway and light-rail lines connecting to
      Salt Lake City.

      Mining executives pitched the idea to some 50 builders. "A lot of them rolled
      their eyes and walked away," said Keith L. Morey, manager for Kennecott's
      flagship Daybreak project, where just seven builders were chosen to help build
      the first town of 14,000 homes.

      "It was a mixture of excitement and fear," Brad Wilson, president and chief
      executive of Destination Homes, said of his decision to sign on with Kennecott
      to help build Daybreak.

      "We didn't know if this was something people would wrap their arms around.
      It's so different -- the tiny lots and alley-loaded garages. It was a risk,
      but at the end of the day we felt they knew what they were doing," Wilson

      Kennecott's whole plan calls for 162,800 houses in neighborhoods mixing the
      wealthy and wage earners in shared communities of gardens, pocket parks and
      surrounding open space.

      The so-called West Bench development -- the string of communities along the
      base of a mountain range -- differs from other planned communities by
      emphasizing connections to a larger metropolis.

      "It's part of a vision for how the whole region grows," said lead planner
      Peter Calthorpe, a Berkeley, Calif., consultant who designed the trendy
      redevelopment of Denver's old Stapleton Airport, which is about the same size
      as Kennecott's Daybreak community.

      Kennecott is developing the rolling foothills of its 144 square miles of land,
      which ranks as the largest piece of land anywhere in the United States that's
      under the control of a single, private owner and next to a major metropolis.

      Single ownership of the land "gives incredible control over development and
      the execution of the plan," said Gary Hunt, a retired executive for Irvine
      Co., which developed one of the country's first master-planned communities, in
      California's Orange County, starting in the 1960s. "In other parts of the
      country you don't have that kind of opportunity."

      At Daybreak's information pavilion, manager Barbara Breen greets prospective
      buyers at a glass building with commanding views of the Wasatch and Oquirrh
      (OH-kuhr) mountains that frame the Salt Lake valley.

      "We went on this incredible siege last summer, selling 40 houses a week, so we
      ran out," she said. More than 800 houses have been sold so far, half of them
      still under construction.

      Daybreak was not without its environmental problems, a legacy of a century of
      digging at nearby Bingham Mine, which is expected to keep operating until at
      least 2018.

      A small part of Daybreak was built over ponds that collected mining runoff --
      along with heavy metals -- from 1936 to 1965. Kennecott scooped up 3 million
      square yards of contaminated soil and carried it back near the mine.

      Some buyers bluntly ask whether Daybreak would "glow in the dark or
      something," said Peter F. McMahon, president of Kennecott Land Co. He argued
      the Daybreak cleanup exceeded Environmental Protection Agency standards.

      "It's cleaner than a bunch of other parts of the valley," he said.

      Kennecott is helping build a pair of reverse-osmosis filter plants to clean
      tainted groundwater over the next 40 years, while providing fresh tap water
      for the southwest part of the Salt Lake valley. It dug other wells 300 feet
      deep to provide ground-source heating and cooling for a new elementary school
      and community center and contributed $400,000 to kick-start an environmental
      study of extending a light-rail line from downtown Salt Lake City to Daybreak.

      "It's a new business for Rio Tinto. Some people said, "What are you doing this
      for?'" McMahon said, pointing out that Kennecott acquired more land than it
      will ever need for mining. "We have land in an area with strong demographics
      and a strong economy. All that growth is heading that way."

      "Sustainable" development is a term McMahon and other Kennecott executives
      often use to describe their venture. Daybreak, for example, will contain all
      of its own runoff, using it for irrigation for native grasses and 40 species
      of trees, said Greg L. Rasmussen, an engineer and Kennecott's director of land

      At Daybreak, every house will be within a five minute's walk of a park on 37
      miles of interconnecting trails, some lined with channel streams. It will be
      just as easy to walk or bicycle to grocery and other shops and restaurants in
      the village core.

      Kennecott banned the use of aluminum siding and fake cobblestone facades in
      favor of natural materials and insisted on rambling front porches for most

      "My wife always wanted a front porch," said Craig Douglass, a 56-year-old
      software quality analyst for 3M Co., who moved from a nearby subdivision,
      where he found his half-acre yard too large to maintain.

      At Daybreak, the couple bought a $273,000, 1,650-square-foot house with "a
      nice small yard, and we're looking forward to all the amenities" that will
      include a sailing lake, he said.

      "The idea is these homes will appreciate in value because of their quality and
      the amenities of the neighborhood," said Wilson, the builder who has taken 200
      orders so far and can't finish the houses fast enough for his buyers.

      Kennecott is selling lots to builders but can't control home prices, which are
      rising with demand and range from less than $200,000 to more than $800,000,
      depending on a menu of options the builders offer.

      Wilson said Kennecott's first town is not only unique to Utah but the country.
      He's toured many planned communities in other states but adds, "I don't know
      anyone who has done it as well as Kennecott."

      Source: Associated Press
    • Carlos F. Pardo SUTP
      To those of you interested in a nice piece of information about the wonderful Jane Jacobs, see the bulleting from PPS at
      Message 2 of 3 , Apr 26, 2006
        To those of you interested in a nice piece of information about the
        wonderful Jane Jacobs, see the bulleting from PPS at

        Best regards,

        Carlos F. Pardo
      • Jason Meggs
        ... Also, the LA Times has a good one: it focuses on her passion and fiestiness in taking on the establishment.
        Message 3 of 3 , Apr 26, 2006
          On Wed, 26 Apr 2006, Carlos F. Pardo SUTP wrote:

          > To those of you interested in a nice piece of information about the
          > wonderful Jane Jacobs, see the bulleting from PPS at
          > http://www.pps.org/info/bulletin/jane_jacobs

          Also, the LA Times has a good one: it focuses on her passion and
          fiestiness in taking on the establishment.


          I paste the article, below.


          Jane Jacobs, 89; Urban Theorist, Community Activist Who Fought Lower
          Manhattan Freeway Plan
          By Mary Rourke, Times Staff Writer
          April 26, 2006

          Jane Jacobs, an urban theorist and community activist whose books argued
          for the rehabilitation of neighborhoods on traditional lines, breaking
          with emerging trends in city development, died Tuesday. She was 89.

          An American-born citizen of Canada, Jacobs died at a hospital in Toronto
          of natural causes, according to publicist Sally Marvin of Random House,
          Jacobs' publisher. Jacobs was admitted to the hospital late last week and
          had been in failing health for several years.

          She was internationally known as an advocate of cities with distinct
          neighborhoods, built to a human scale, mixing commercial and residential

          She was against building highways that cut through city centers and was
          once arrested at a public hearing after she stormed the podium to express
          her opposition to a plan for an expressway through lower Manhattan.

          "Jane Jacobs' thinking about cities was clear and it came from a person
          who lived in cities," Toronto Mayor David Miller told The Times on
          Tuesday. "She didn't just write about urban issues. She acted on her

          Jacobs' most influential work, 1961's "The Death and Life of Great
          American Cities," set the stage for a battle that Jacobs waged for
          decades. Defying popular theories on how to renew city slums by plowing
          them under and replacing them with uniform housing projects, she pushed
          for recycled buildings and new structures scaled to the existing

          Her feisty prose often read like a manifesto. "This book is an attack on
          current city planning and rebuilding," she announced in the opening
          paragraph of "The Death and Life of Great American Cities."

          She continued: "It is also, and mostly, an attempt to introduce new
          principles of city planning and rebuilding, different and even opposite
          from those now taught in everything from schools of architecture and
          planning to Sunday supplements and women's magazines."

          In her view a successful city needed vibrant neighborhoods linked by
          public transportation. Each area needed its own mix of old and new
          buildings, a constant influx of smaller, independent businesses, and a
          range of residential and commercial space.

          Early critics accused her of being short on realistic solutions to the
          challenges of urban life. Admirers called her a maverick and a
          comprehensive thinker. Thirty years later, when her books were required
          reading in graduate school programs and many of her beliefs about cities
          were widely accepted, she was praised as a visionary and a pivotal figure
          in her field.

          "It's not that the world was one way before Jane Jacobs and changed 180
          degrees because of her," Paul Goldberger, architecture critic of the New
          Yorker magazine, said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times in 2003.

          It was more a case of Jacobs daring to voice her complaints in a firm,
          public manner.

          "Nobody else spoke out against the establishment the way Jacobs did,"
          Goldberger said. "In the '50s, American cities were generally considered
          messy, undesirable things. Suburban life was considered the ideal. Jane
          Jacobs fought valiantly in defense of plain, old-fashioned, urban life."

          She was opposed to the use of bulldozers as a tool for urban renewal.
          "From her point of view," Goldberger said, "nothing was being renewed. It
          was all being destroyed." Referring to Jacobs' "The Death and Life of
          American Cities" as "arguably the most important book written about cities
          in the 20th century," he summed up her attitude toward tear-down renewal:
          "The emperor of city planning has no clothes."

          As a writer and community activist, Jacobs' energy was unrelenting. She
          challenged the views of influential thinkers such as historian Lewis
          Mumford, author of "The Culture of Cities."

          Her most audacious outburst came in the 1960s when New York City planner
          and power broker Robert Moses announced his plan for an expressway through
          the Washington Square area in lower Manhattan.

          Jacobs attended the public hearing where she and other protesters vocally
          opposed the plan.

          "He was one of the first speakers," she recalled of Moses, in a 2000
          interview with the Associated Press. "He was furious and he stood up
          there, inside the railed enclosure, and not where most speakers spoke —
          outside where the public microphone was. He was privileged.

          "He gripped this railing and he said, in dismissing scornfully our plan to
          have no more than the existing road and better not even that, he said,
          'These protests are just by a bunch of … a bunch of mothers!' "

          Jacobs, joined by other protesters, then rushed the podium, disrupting the

          Jane Jacobs, 89; Urban Theorist, Community Activist Who Fought Lower
          Manhattan Freeway Plan
          April 26 2006

          Page 2 of 2 << back 1 2

          She was arrested on several charges, including criminal mischief, which
          established her as a terror, at least around City Hall. It also reduced to
          rubble any view that Jacobs was merely a disheveled, jolly-faced lady with
          the big, round glasses.

          Rather, she was "a far-sighted genius who guided cities in new
          directions," Robert Caro, who wrote a biography of Moses, told the
          Associated Press on Tuesday. Her battle with Moses was "one of the truly
          heroic sagas in the history of New York," Caro said.

          Jacobs first staked her claim as the bane of the establishment in 1961
          when she led the opposition against a tear-down plan for her West Village
          neighborhood in lower Manhattan. Redevelopers intended to take out the
          brownstones and small apartment complexes in the area and replace them
          with a housing project that covered several blocks.

          She argued against demolition and offered her own proposal, which
          preserved existing housing and added a middle-income apartment complex
          built to scale. Eventually, the plan she helped devise was approved.

          "In the '60s, technocrats were leading the way in urban planning,"
          architect Eric Owen Moss told The Times in 2003.

          His Los Angeles-based firm has recycled office space for housing and
          blended recycled buildings with new structures in the Jacobs tradition.

          "Jacobs was a unique, sensitive voice for a different point of view," Moss
          said. "The technocrat said, 'We'll put an expressway here, a dam there, a
          high-rise here'. She said, 'Let's not build the expressway through
          peoples' backyards. Let's keep the continuity of the existing
          neighborhood. And let's have parks.' "

          Forty years after she helped defeat plans for an expressway through lower
          Manhattan, Jacobs was still receiving phone calls from community activists
          across North America, seeking her guidance. In 2000, concerned citizens of
          Pittsburgh wanted to block a redevelopment project that would have wiped
          out two of the city's downtown streets. Jacobs offered coaching by phone,
          and the Pittsburgh activists won their battle.

          Her credentials for the role of urban strategist were comparatively
          sparse. Born May 4, 1916, in Scranton, Pa., she graduated from high school
          and worked briefly as a reporter on the Scranton Tribune before she moved
          to New York City. There she attended classes at Columbia University but
          did not complete her college degree.

          She went to work as a freelance journalist covering urban issues. In 1952,
          she was hired by Architecture Forum magazine. She became a senior editor
          and remained on the staff until 1962. In her essay, "Downtown Is for
          People," included in the book, "The Exploding Metropolis" (1958), Jacobs
          suggested ways to revitalize downtown areas.

          She criticized governmental civic centers as "pretentious and dull" and
          said that shopping centers all look alike. The goal of urban renewal
          should be to make a city's core, "more surprising, more compact, more
          variegated, and busier than ever," she wrote.

          Through the 1960s Jacobs was appointed to a series of government projects,
          including New York City Mayor John V. Lindsay's Task Force on Housing and
          the Task Force on Natural Beauty, overseen by then-First Lady Lady Bird
          Johnson, that supported the planting of shrubs and flowers in public

          She had gained both respect and notoriety in a male-dominated field, in a
          steeply competitive city. Then, somewhat abruptly, in 1968, Jacobs and her
          husband of 24 years, architect Robert Hyde Jacobs, moved their family of
          three children to Toronto.

          The Jacobs, who had two sons close to draft age, opposed the Vietnam War.
          In 1974, Jane Jacobs became a Canadian citizen.

          "Jane was part of a group of extremely articulate, independent thinking,
          highly accomplished people" who had a strong impact on the growth of the
          city, said Joe Berridge of Urban Strategies, a planning firm in Toronto.
          "By the early '70s, a few years after they settled in Toronto, it was
          taking off and becoming a great city."

          Within months of her arrival in Toronto, Jacobs imprinted her style when
          she joined a group of urban activists battling a proposed downtown
          expressway. The plan was ultimately defeated.

          More recently, she fought a plan to build a bridge from downtown Toronto
          to the airport. "Storming the barricades with the help of her walker,"
          Berridge said of Jacobs' style.

          Urban planners in Toronto credit Jacobs with helping preserve the city's
          highly livable neighborhoods and saving some of its worthy old buildings.
          Outspoken to the point of being brash, she once declared that the city
          planning board of Toronto was "brain-dead."

          "Jane Jacobs had a strong anti-bureaucratic bent," said Eudora
          Pendergrast, who worked as a city planner for Toronto in the early '90s
          and more recently opened her own consulting firm. "That statement had an
          incredible effect. It shaped an effort by planners to be less
          bureaucratic. Jane Jacobs was highly respected."

          She continued to write books on her favorite topic. In "The Economy of
          Cities" (1969) and "Cities and the Wealth of Nations" (1984) she argued
          that the financial health of a nation depends on productive cities.

          In one instance, she used Japan as an example. After World War II, a
          number of Japanese cities developed bicycle manufacturing factories that
          boosted the local economy. Business grew to the point where those cities
          were able to expand into automobile production. Within 30 years the
          Japanese economy went from one of the weakest to one of the strongest in
          the world.

          Some critics challenged Jacobs for leaping too freely from the specific to
          the general. "She was on much firmer ground when she wrote about structure
          and form," Goldberger said. "There, her theories bore out."

          When she was in her 80s and still living in the house she once shared with
          her husband and three children, journalists continued to called on her.
          Several of them made note of her eccentric taste in home decor.

          Porch furniture in the living room, a closet converted to a telephone
          booth and a wooden model for a fighter plane fuel tank as a door stop were
          seen as proof of her commitment to recycling.

          At age 88, she toured to promote her book, "Dark Age Ahead" (2004), taking
          questions with the help of an old-fashioned ear trumpet.

          In the book she wrote that family and community bonds need reinforcing and
          that cities need a self-policing system to keep professionals in check.

          To get to that point, her suggestion was to start small. "Everything is
          connected to everything else," she wrote. "...if something is corrected
          and improved it's likely to affect other things beneficially."

          Jacobs' passion for cities never left her. "All through organized human
          history, if you wanted prosperity you had to have cities," she told the
          Los Angeles Times in 1997, during a conference about her work held in
          Toronto. "Cities are places that attract new people with new ideas."

          Her husband died in 1996. She is survived by two sons, one daughter, two
          grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and a brother.

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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