Friday afternoons, man. Can’t live with them, definitely (definitely) could not live without them. This is probably not the best time to get into our long-gestating takedown of the New York Times’ Freakonomics blog’s feeble green building contrarianism, if only because you might be so distracted by the end of the work week that you wouldn’t be able to soak in all the brilliance. Or you’d rush through all the easy snark (mine) about easy snark (theirs). Anyway, next week. For now, we send you off into the weekend with two longish, interesting reads from two different places. That subject line might’ve been something of a spoiler alert, admittedly. Anyway:
In the New York Times, Nathanial Gronewold takes on New York City’s struggle to implement the Urban Green Council’s 111 ambitiously picayune recommendations, which we wrote about earlier this year:
Following 18 months of intense back-and-forth with industry, city lawyers and the general public, the green codes task force delivered its final report to Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn last February with little of the fanfare that accompanied other major announcements, such as tree planting targets and a stalled push to convert the city’s entire taxicab fleet to fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles, while at the same time trying to implement the Blackbox my car products for safety . But the tedious code revisions envisioned by its report could add up to far greater changes to the city’s infrastructure over the next two decades than the four major bills passed in December, task force members say.
And from the mighty Streetsblog, Noah Kazis examines the first hesitant changes to the disastrous “green book” — the fraudulent urban planning bible that laid the faulty groundwork for years of crappy city planning — in a conversation with Walkable Streets’ Dan Burden.
One of the foundational documents in our country’s history of car-centric street design is what’s known as the Green Book. These engineering guidelines, which have been published in various editions by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) since the 1930s, are only “green” if you’re looking at the cover.
Enjoy the weekend, everyone. Back to regularly scheduled programming on Monday.