Alexander Dukes has been a regular contributor for Strong Towns since 2016. He is a United States Air Force Community Planner working at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey. He is a graduate of Tuskegee University and Auburn University, with a Bachelor’s Political Science and a Master’s in Community Planning, respectively. With this background, Alexander focuses his planning work on both urban public policy and the design of the physical realm for both military and civilian applications. Alexander is principally concerned with building sustainable cities, towns, and neighborhoods that provide all citizens - regardless of income or ethnicity, with access to meaningful employment, civic resources, and beautiful places.
If planners learn to determine what the public will is and apply themselves in service to that public will, our municipalities can be that much closer to towns well planned.
If zoning codes are the primary tool in a planner's toolbox, that's a problem. Here's a three part system that would offer a better way for planners to design cities.
How community gardens can be a catalyst for entrepreneurship and economic development.
Autonomous vehicles have the potential to revolutionize America’s transportation system, not just through their safety and convenience, but also because of their lower cost.
Here are the three core characteristics you need for a successful urban center, plus how to creatively make them happen on a shoestring budget.
American communities need to shift away from a big box retail strategy to a local, placemaking retail strategy. When placemaking urban centers become the default model, local retailers flourish and a broad, diverse Democratized Economy emerges.
The key to building a sustainable local economy is to nurture a diverse set of employers that operate in multiple industries. With the emergence of the Democratized Economy, localized production for regional markets is returning to the fore.