In the planning portion of an urban area, money stands above all the rest. An area is not possible to develop, maintain and be sustainable if people are unable to have a vocation. Transportation, environmental concerns and other urban planning projects and idea rely on individuals having jobs that can produce funds for funding to the project. Wither the funds are collected through government taxes or private donations is a non issue if an area’s management of the funds is not sustainable. In addition to budget concerns, there are several articles showing innovative solutions to common problems.
Currently there are budget shortfalls nationwide from the federal to the county level. There are some stark examples of poor planning and not planning for the worst, the most prominent being Los Angeles, CA, Detroit, and Harrisburg, PA. It was surprising the lack of sustainable urban planning that went into budget decisions in LA and Harrisburg, and how innovative solutions while cool might not be the smartest budget decisions. There is hope though, where in the article “Strapped City cuts and Cuts, there is a great example of Colorado Springs, CO where the populations is taking over simple government function and doing a good job of it.
An example of an innovated solution with huge budget concerns was the trash incinerator purchased by Harrisburg, PA. The article “Harrisburg, PA Weighs Bankruptcy” the 288 million dollar incinerator project, has interest payments that are larger the city’s annual budget now. While the incinerator is a very cool way to deal with trash, it was a foolish budget decision. An innovated solution to address trash was the trash tubes install in NYC. They have been an great example of planning and will be interesting to see how it works in the future.
As articles were being gathered an interesting theme developed where ad hoc urban planning situations developed. The example of “The Parking Lot where Pilots Sleep” and “Gramercy Park” were very interesting in how local people are working though urban planning problems normally seen in larger districts. The case of the propaganda posters being used in the Queens was a phenomenal example of individuals addressing issues in a smart manner.
As urban planning continues to mature as a field, and people look to urban planners for more insight into large projects requirement funding, they would be wise to consider the budget impacts of their designs. As LA and Harrisburg are showing us, there is no company, city or region that is “too big to fail”.
Doug Bates “Time to get real on Oregon's state budget”, The Oregonian May 13th, 2010
Cari Tuna “University of California Plans to Slash Spending”, Wall Street Journal May 18th, 2010
John R. Emshwiller “L.A. Project Gets Caught in Limbo” Wall Street Journal, May 29, 2010
Eric Morath “Restructuring Experts predict more municipality bankruptcy “, Wall Street Journal May 17, 2010
Aaron Rutkoff ‘On Roosevelt Island, A Tribute to Trash Tubes” Wall Street Journal May 18, 2010
David Ranson “The Revenue Limits of Tax and Spend” Wall Street Journal May 17, 2010
R.M. Schneiderman “With Metropolitan Etiquet”, Wall Street Journal April 26, 2010
Gary Fields “Washington's New Gun Rules” Wall Street Journal May 17, 2010
Pia Catton “Gramercy Park” Wall Street Journal May 10, 2010
Los Angeles International Airport “The Parking Lot where Pilots Sleep”, Wall Street Journal, April 15, 2010
Romy Varghese “Harrisburg, PA Weighs Bankruptcy” Wall Street Journal April 28, 2010
Tamara Audi “Los Angeles Outlines Budget Cuts” Wall Street Journal” April 20, 2010
Eric Mortenson, “Metro and 3 Portland counties approve urban expansions” The Oregonian, May 6 2006
Nick Winfield “The New San Francisco Suburbs, a Plane Ride Away”, Wall Street Journal April 15, 2010
Michael J Trinkleman “Altered States” Wall Street Journal April 17, 2010
Leslie Eaton “Strapped City Cuts and Cuts” Wall Street Journal, April 13, 2010
Nick Timiraos “Foreclosures hit the rich and famous “ Wall Stree Journal April 9, 2010
Tamara Audi “Los Angeles Maps Rail Plan With a Key Stop: Washington” Wall Street Journal March 11th
Steven Greenhut “Vallejo's Painful Lessons in Municipal Bankruptcy”, Wall Street Journal March 26, 2010