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Posts Tagged ‘Livability’

Book Review: Common Ground in a Liquid City

Book Review: Common Ground in a Liquid City

A few months ago I picked up Common Ground in a Liquid City off a friend’s shelf. It’s a collection of essays by Matt Hern that are tied together by a few common themes. After reading just a few randomly chosen pages, I can honestly say I now look at differently at cities I visit, […]


Tiny Houses in Idaho and Elsewhere

Tiny House in Idaho designed and constructed by Macy Miller. Photo courtesy of Inhabitat.

NPR had a feature on architect Macy Miller and her 200-s.f. house last week. Although neither the concept nor execution is new, it’s always good to see examples of well built, livable houses in the mainstream media. In this particular house I really like the use of salvaged wood from shipping pallets for the siding, […]


The “End” of Suburbia Debate in the NYTimes

Suburban Sprawl outside Phoenix, AZ. Via Wikimedia/Creative Commons.

There was an article in the New York Times last week covering the current debate over the direction suburban sprawl is taking: Is Suburban Sprawl on its Way Back? It features several statistics that could probably be taken with a grain of salt (e.g. the conversion of farmland has dipped to 800,000 acres per year […]


Kowloon – Once the Densest Place on Earth

Kowloon Walled City circa 1989. Photo by  Jidanni / Wikimedia Creative Commons.

A fantastic series of photos of the old Kowloon Walled City (Hong Kong) has been circulating recently. These were taken over five years by Greg Girard and Ian Lamboth before the city was raised in 1992, to be replaced by a park that occupies the space. The photos may be seen at Girard’s website here. […]


Cubix, San Francisco: Housing Before its Time.

Cubix Micro-apartments in SoMa, San Francisco. Via Creative Commons / Dave Fayram

Cubix is an apartment complex in the Soma neighborhood of San Francisco. Developed by HausBau, It consists of 98 “micro-apartments” that were some of the lowest-priced properties on market at around $280k when introduced in 2008 when SF’s median home price was around $759k. The kicker? The dorm-style studios were – and still are – […]


Democracy at Work: Seattle Passes Pro- and Anti-Density Bills in the Same Session

A typical off-the-shelf design (this circa 2007) that CVS uses in strip malls across America. Via Wikimedia / Creative Commons.

As an example of how fickle (or consistently NIMBY-ish) people can be when it comes to zoning and density, the Seattle City Council passed two measures today – one limiting the densities of certain neighborhoods, and one requiring it. 1. For those neighbors against the construction of “monster houses” on small lots, the city extended […]


Would You Live in This House?

A typical house in the Vennelyst area of Copenhagen, Denmark. Approx. 85 s.f.

  Or this infill?     This 4-ft-wide house comes as close to compressing your life into two dimensions as any: Yes, that is daylight in the gap. Which makes this home in Seattle seem downright oversized…     Finally, somewhat less outstanding in its context is this sliver of a house in Ahmedabad, India […]