Just as we at Strong Towns do not have a formula or solution for productive growth, but rather an approach to development, I believe that effective art is more about process, than project.
In early January, I adopted a dog. As with many rescue stories, we ended up with more dog than we anticipated, which has put me and my new neighborhood through a rigorous test. My dog has given me a tough decision: get a car, or become the neighbor I want to be.
A signalized crossing is an unnecessary expense for what a few traffic cones could easily accomplish. Humanizing Brunswick Street, on the other hand, would be in the best interests of the province and city.
Rachel Quednau interviews Gracen Johnson about making the hard decision to move to a new town, plus her work with the Incremental Development Alliance and her philosophy that "love will save this place."
What if some of the stuff we think we can leave to history were core features, rather than unfortunate side effects of the traditional city? What if we can’t have the good without some of the bad?
You cannot build a place of enduring value that isn't homey, that isn't loved.
We live in cities starved for good public space. There are so few spots in North America where you can sit comfortably for free. And when we do try to create sittable public space, we often fail spectacularly.
A year ago, I wrote about an old school being converted into a community center. This photo collection shows what has happened since, the results of Strong Citizenship.
What would a contemporary neighborhood in which people work and proudly display their names and livelihoods on the door be like? It's not what I'd call revolutionary, but in 2016, it's a completely novel and magnetic idea to me.
Rather than allow for natural pedestrian movement and traffic calming, my city has recommended funnelling pedestrians into a signalized crosswalk so they can wait their turn to cross the street in an approved manner. I believe that is the wrong answer to the right question.
This week, we're inviting readers to join us for a series of conversations with our writers and staff on Slack. Today's SlackChat will be hosted by Gracen Johnson at 12pm CT.
If one were to follow Schumacher’s advice and put the inner house in order, testing out our biggest goals at the household level, what does that look like?
As I engage more in this work of neighbourhood-level doing, the role of local knowledge is becoming clearer to me. It seems almost cruel that at a certain scale, local knowledge is worth everything.
What do homebuddies do? Homebudding: growing homeyness. (Or in Strong Towns terminology, they create productive places.) Here's a video with examples of homebudding.
Built and social environments are interdependent and right now, that relationship in the world around me is out of sync. Indigenous people who have lived on this land for thousands of years have a lot to teach us.
Small scale developers envision a world with a lot more landlords. Here's why we think that’s such a good thing.
What is the process involved in becoming locally influential on urban issues if you don't work for the government or a planning firm? Here are some tips I’ve pulled from my experience so far.
I recall listening to a conversation about technical debt a few short weeks ago and nodding my head at the metaphor. So I asked my partner Ryan, and our friend Brendan, both of whom work in software, to explain technical debt a little further.
Tips and tricks for understanding zoning codes and starting out as a small scale developer.
This summer, Gracen Johnson documented the absurd incidence of benches and other seating arrangements built where no one would ever want to use them, then she created a solution.