Editor’s Choice: The Ten Best Opinion Pieces of 2010

In 2010, our web columnists tackled transit development, the foreclosure crisis, open government, architecture and Tea Partiers. Read on to see the top opinion pieces of the year.

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Can the Densities of Some Neighborhoods Be too Low for Transit to Work?
by Yonah Freemark, April 2010

Can the densities of some neighborhoods be too low for transit to work? The history of the streetcar suburb suggests that without adequate population near transit, mobility options may slowly disappear.

When Transit Strays from Its Social Goals
by Yonah Freemark, July 2010

As BART continues its effort to build an airport link, is it sacrificing the needs of its low-income customers for wealthier riders?

To read all entries of Yonah Freemark’s Grassroutes Column, click here.

Creating a Culture of Civic Engagement
by Christian Madera, November 2010

Online tools hold enormous potential to help citizens get involved in their communities. Yet without an informed citizenry and a strong culture of civic engagement, its likely that even the most sophisticated uses of online technology won’t succeed in increasing public participation.

Dispelling the Magic Bullet Myth
by Christian Madera, August 2010

New media tools are often billed as a way to get more people involved in civic issues. While technology can make increasing public participation easier, without a policy-making process that encourages citizen input, online engagement initiatives likely won’t succeed.

To read all entries of Christian Madera’s Open Cities column, click here.

Are We Becoming One Big Phoenix?
by Willy Staley, July 2010

Does the mortgage interest tax deduction represent everything that’s wrong with our economy? Is it making us one big Phoenix?

Chicago: Cabrini-Green and the Bean
by Willy Staley, December 2010

Urban Nation’s road trip finishes up in Chicago, where we examine the demolition of the Cabrini-Green housing project, and the Cloud Gate sculpture in Millenium Park, and how they both teach us the same lesson about urban policy.

To read all entries of Willy Staley’s Urban Nation column, click here.

World Watch’s Three-Part Series on the World Expo in Shanghai
Part One
Part Two
Part Three
by Josh Leon, Summer 2010

In a three-part series, Josh Leon reports from the high-tech, high-hype smorgasbord that was the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai.

Putting Our Best Facade Forward
by Josh Leon, March 2010

A sophisticated new embassy in London — which opens its doors in 2017, at least to those with clearance — pins its laurels on cosmetic change,

To read all entries of Josh Leon’s World Watch column, click here.

The High Cost of Electric Cars
by Diana Lind, October 2010

Undoubtedly the structure of cars makes no sense — cars are too big, too inefficient — and they deserve a redesign. But policy makers should think twice before thinking that new technology is going to make our cities that much more sustainable.

Distributed Culture
by Jeremy Rosenberg, June 2010

These days, savvy, budget strapped, partnership-seeking, and community-minded institutions are using the landscape, or a city map, as museum.

To read all entries of Jeremy Rosenberg’s City / Culture column, click here.

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Tags: chicagolos angelesclevelandyonah freemarkgrassroutesopen citiesphoenix

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