Gov 2.0, crossroads Houston, HSR, TOD, and more
A busy holiday season week with a business trip to Austin thrown in, so just a few small misc items to pass along:
- Fast Company on "How an Army of Techies Is Taking on City Hall: Still waiting for a full reboot in Washington, D.C., an army of citizen techies is redefining civic engagement on a hyperlocal level." Houston could definitely benefit from some of these Gov 2.0 initiatives which can reduce costs and increase innovation, citizen engagement, and economic development (by cultivating Gov 2.0 software startups). If anybody at city hall would like to discuss this in more depth, please don't hesitate to contact me (tgattis (at) pdq.net).
- An interesting article in The Texas Tribune cataloging Houston's green initiatives.
- A Washington Post editorial warning Obama to rethink his high speed rail plans.
- The Austin Chronicle profiles the reasons for the failure of transit-oriented development there. Frankly, Houston has seen the same problem along the Main St line. Hat tip to Barry.
- Bicycling advocate Peter Wang's critique of the Bicycle Commuter Act of 2008, which he believes is a wasteful boondoggle.
- Why Transit Will Never Be Energy Efficient (except for vanpools). Unfortunate, but the math doesn't lie.
- David Brooks at the NYT on our "Crossroads Nation", which is optimistic about America's future, and its description makes me optimistic about Houston's future as we're a global crossroads for energy, medical, and port trade.
"In fact, the U.S. is well situated to be the crossroads nation. It is well situated to be the center of global networks and to nurture the right kinds of networks. Building that America means doing everything possible to thicken connections: finance research to attract scientists; improve infrastructure to ease travel; fix immigration to funnel talent; reform taxes to attract superstars; make study abroad a rite of passage for college students; take advantage of the millions of veterans who have served overseas.
The nation with the thickest and most expansive networks will define the age. There’s no reason to be pessimistic about that."
Labels: economic strategy, environment, government transparency, high-speed rail, transit, transit-oriented development, world city