Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Go ride a bicycle poster, Brainstorm print and design

in a booth at Baltimore's Artscape this past weekend. The website for the producer.

Geoff also sends along this ad fronting the classified newspaper section of the Brunswick News in Georgia. Traditionally, one of the largest sources of classified advertising for newspapers has been local automotive dealers.

So newspapers have been taking it from all sides--rise of online news sources, decline in subscription rates, decline in job advertising, decline in the number of local retailers, consolidation of retail and service businesses yielding fewer advertising accounts--e.g., from Woodward & Lothrop and Hechts to Macys in terms of the local department store scene--and the decline in image advertising and other promotion by so-called "national" advertisers, which was charged at a significantly higher rate.
Buy a car, not a bicycle, Brunswick News ad

I don't remember the numbers anymore, but at one point a good 15% of the economy was related directly or indirectly to automobile purchases and maintenance. (As a student for a time I worked at the Survey Research Center and one of the studies we called around the country on was the Survey of Consumer Attitudes. A big chunk of the questions were about cars, and not just because we were calling from Michigan.)

I haven't read much about "steady state economics" which is something that EE mentions from time to time, but in a compact development scenario--"the city of short distances" I saw it referred to as recently--far fewer cars are required, changing the nature of the economy significantly.


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