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Goodbye, Sidewalks: London Planners Break Down Boundaries Between Cars and Pedestrians

Londoners learn how to share the street without barriers to keep vehicles and pedestrians apart.

Advocates for livable streets usually push for more sidewalks and bike lanes to protect pedestrians and cyclists from cars. Division is seen as the key to safety and participation. But a new project in London questions the idea of barriers to begin with, envisioning a "shared space" for the intermingling of vehicles and walkers. It may seem chaotic, but planners believe it could foster a more accessible, safer, pedestrian-friendlier thoroughfare by forcing everyone to slow down and be aware of who's on the road.

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GOOD for America: Car-Free Streets

Our CEO heads to the Dylan Ratigan Show to talk about car-free streets and the business benefits.

GOOD CEO Ben Goldhirsh is a regular guest on The Dylan Ratigan Show on MSNBC for a segment called "GOOD for America." We'll be collecting clips of his appearances here.

Two years ago, Mayor Michael Bloomberg closed down Manhattan's Times Square to cars. The idea was to give the street back to pedestrians, increase mobility along that notoriously clustered stretch of Broadway, improve the experience for visitors and local workers, and hopefully, improve air quality. Today, it's pretty hard to find any critics of the change.

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Activists Undermine San Francisco's No Sitting Law with DIY Benches

San Francisco made sitting or lying on the sidewalk illegal, so a group of activists has started installing benches in public under cover of night.


Back in November, San Francisco voters passed a law criminalizing sitting and lying on sidewalks between 7:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. This controversial "sit-lie ordinance" was supported by Mayor Gavin Newsom and by the Chamber of Commerce, because, they argued, having homeless people napping or resting on the streets makes them less hospitable to everyone else. Opponents of the law argued that it would simply give police license to harass the poor.

Now police are beginning to enforce the law, giving sitters and liers preliminary warnings, and even ticketing one "chronic relaxer." In response, a group of activists has started installing DIY benches on the streets, made with wood from discarded pallets, so homeless people can rest legally.

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What Do the World's Most Romantic Cities Have in Common?

We love—and fall in love in—cities that engender the main elements of smart, sustainable urbanism.


Kaid Benfield, Sustainable Cities and Smart Growth Director for the NRDC, answers this question in his annual Valentine's Day must-read post on the intersection of smart, sustainable urbanism, livable streets, and romance:

Prague. Venice. Rome. Paris. These are some destinations that perennially make "ten-most-romantic cities” lists. I just looked at three such sites, and all four cities were consensus picks. Vienna and Lisbon each made two of the lists.

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