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Articles in the Green Jobs Category

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[13 Oct 2014 | No Comment | ]
Milwaukee’s Effort to Build a New Industry Around Clean Water

The three lake sturgeon in Discovery World’s “touch tank” aren’t given official names, but that hasn’t kept at least one employee in this newish Milwaukee educational center from christening them female superhero names like Tank Girl and She-Ra. As a Michigan native, I’d heard of Sturgeon before, but I wasn’t prepared to fall for them the way I did when I put my hand in the tank.

Sturgeon are big – in the wild, they’ve been known to reach up to seven feet long. And they’re unlike any other fish I’d seen. Their rough skin is scale-less and their spine is bony like dinosaurs you’ve seen pictured in kids’ books. In fact, sturgeon have been around for at least 200 million years. It’s a mind-blowing story of survival.

Book Review, Economic Development, Featured, Good Ideas, Green Jobs, Public Transportation, Sprawl, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[18 Feb 2014 | No Comment | ]
“Bikenomics” – An Instant Classic for Planners and Bicycling Advocates

Certain books become a classic in their field of study because of their comprehensive nature (i.e. The City in History). Others do from their advocacy and groundbreaking nature (i.e. Silent Spring).  In the case of Bikenomics: How Bicycling Can Save the Economy, both of these reasons apply. Author Elly Blue has written “the” definitive book on bicycle planning that clearly identifies the societal, physical, environmental, and economic benefits of bicycling, while also completely debunking the myths, fables, urban legends, half-truths, and outright lies spread by naysayers and automotive apologists.
Facts are funny things. They tend …

Architecture, Art, Brain Drain, Economic Development, Editorial, Education, Featured, Good Ideas, Green Jobs, Public Transportation, Sprawl, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[29 Oct 2013 | No Comment | ]
Ten Lessons from Boulder, Colorado

 
I had the great pleasure of visiting Boulder, Colorado for the first time over an extended weekend. As an urban planner, I was able to take away many useful lessons for Rust Belt communities from the lovely city abutting the Front Range. Granted, not every place can be set aside majestic mountains, but every community does have unique attributes.
Here are what I would quantify as the top ten. Many of these are remarkably similar to the ten lessons from European industrial cities published earlier this month.

Cherish, protect, enhance, and enjoy …

Brain Drain, Education, Green Jobs, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[1 Mar 2013 | No Comment | ]

 
 
 
 
 
 
Published annually by Fourth Economy Consulting of Pittsburgh, the Fourth Economy Index identifies those counties that are “ideally positioned to attract modern investment and managed economic growth.” The index is broken down into micro (<25,000 population) small (25,000-49,999), mid-sized (50,000-149,999), and large (150,000-499,999) counties based on population.  The following five metrics are utilized as foundations for determining future economic success:
·         Investment
·         Talent
·         Sustainability
·         Place
·         Diversity
 
 
 
 
 
Below is a list of the Top 10 large counties as determined by the Fourth Economy Index – six of which are Rust Belt counties (shown …

Architecture, Economic Development, Featured, Good Ideas, Green Jobs, The Environment, U.S. Auto Industry, Urban Planning »

[6 Feb 2013 | No Comment | ]
Western Michigan University installs solar-powered charging stations

Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo recently installed a bank of 15 solar-powered electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in one of its parking lots at Miller Auditorium. What a great idea for making green driving greener.

Source: openpr.com

Utilizing the sun for recharging eliminates the need for electric infrastructure upgrades, uses Mother Nature as the power source instead of fossil fuels, and in theory eliminates the need for the property owner and/or the vehicle owner would have to pay a utility for the electric charge since it is derived from sunlight.
Here is a brief …

Economic Development, Good Ideas, Great Lakes, Green Jobs, Headline, The Environment »

[16 Oct 2012 | No Comment | ]
Michigan establishes “dark-sky coast”

In what may be a first for the nation, Michigan Governor Snyder recently signed legislation establishing a “Dark-Sky Coast” on 21,000 acres of State-owned land in Emmet County, located north of Petoskey and west of Mackinaw City. An aerial photograph of the newly designated Dark-Sky Coast is shown.

Combined with the existing Headlands International Dark-Sky Park, it is hoped the two sites will increase tourism while also literally displaying the numerous benefits of protecting the night sky from sources of light pollution, particularly sky glow or the urban halo effect created by communities which do not require downshielded lighting and shut-off fixtures.

Brain Drain, Economic Development, Featured, Good Ideas, Green Jobs, Politics, Public Transportation, Sprawl, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[24 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Is the Rust Belt Starting to “Get It” on Bicycling?

At the conclusion of this post is a list of Rust Belt metropolitan areas where clusters of bicycle-friendly organizations (communities, colleges, and businesses) have agglomerated. The numbers are based on those organizations which have been recognized as “bicycle-friendly” by the League of American Bicyclists. These clusters are important for several reasons:

The data shows that more places are “getting it,” not just “progressive” enclaves.
They show that coordinated efforts are taking place in a variety of metropolitan areas, and broadly within each metropolitan area, not just in lone islands of bike friendliness.
They …

Economic Development, Featured, Green Jobs, Public Transportation, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[17 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
“Bicycle Friendly Communities” of the Rust Belt

At the end of this post is a list of those communities in the Rust Belt that have been designated by the League of American Bicyclists as a “Bicycle Friendly Community” on its 2012 list. A total of 210 communities have received this honor nationwide, including 47 (22.4%) here in the Rust Belt.
Nine communities that are shown in italics were added to the list in the past year.  Another 11 communities in the Rust Belt where named honorable mentions. Please note the list does not include several communities in the Boston, New York …

Economic Development, Featured, Good Ideas, Green Jobs, Politics, Public Transportation, Regionalism, The Environment, Urban Planning, Urban Poverty »

[3 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Making Sustainable Attainable in Greater Lansing

Monday evening I had the honor to join approximately 100 fellow participants, planners, partners, and stakeholders from throughout Greater Lansing at a kick-off meeting for the Mid-Michigan Program for Greater Sustainability at East Lansing’s Hannah Community Center. Partners in the program include the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, Lansing Area Economic Partnership, Michigan State University Land Policy Institute, Michigan Energy Options, the Michigan Fitness Foundation, Greater Lansing Housing Coalition, the Mid-Michigan Environmental Action Council, and CAM-TV.
The four-hour event showcased the nine sustainability projects that will be part of the three-year effort …

Architecture, Economic Development, Editorial, Featured, Green Jobs, Real Estate, The Environment, Urban Planning »

[23 Feb 2012 | No Comment | ]
Guest Editorial: Occupy the USGBC! A Call to Arms for Preservationists

Speak with any preservationist who has considered LEED certification for a project and they will be quick to point out that the act of saving an existing structure is given the same weight as installing bike racks in the LEED scoring system – that is to say, not much.