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Cuyahoga green bulkheads go 2.0; Ohio rail faces its critics; San Fran gets handle on parking

Marc Lefkowitz  |  04/06/10 @ 4:00pm

  • Green bulkheads are an example of local design innovation and (a potential) ecologically sound alternative to a deferred $100 million maintenance of the Cuyahoga River shipping channel. A local consortium plans to test three more plotsof planted 'green bulkheads' near Arcelor-Mittal this summer.

    Green bulkheads fall into a new design category: Biomimicry, or, designs based on how nature efficiently adapts to new challenges. Cuyahoga County Planning, E4S and Cuyahoga River RAP view the green bulkheads as a test case for more business opportunities. The consortium recently invited Chris Allen, Project Manager of AskNature.org at the Biomimicry Institute and Certified Biomimicry Professional, Lisa Schmidtke to explore a local resource and learning center in NE Ohio to advance Biomimicry methods in the United States. For more information.

  • Florida is facing an even steeper challenge-going from no rail directly to high speed-than Ohio's plan to upgrade its existing freight lines and reintroduce passenger rail. Critics of Ohio's 3-C rail sayits initial speeds are too slow. Supporters answer that Ohio's "Quick Start Plan" will lead to investments that will make rail competitive with the car on travel time, save money, improve productivity and create jobs.

    "There has been a lot mentioned in the media recently about the speed of Ohio's passenger rail service," writes Jon Milenthal, marketing consultant for the 3-C rail project. "Most recently, there has been some confusion over whether Ohio would need to build new tracks to achieve service at 110-MPH. The current plan is to roll-out passenger rail service along the Cincinnati-Dayton-Columbus-Cleveland at speeds of 79-MPH. The simple answer to the question about whether new tracks would be necessary for achieving speeds of 110-MPH is 'no'."

    Read this white paper to understand how the 3-C will work with the freight rail companies. This will be one of ODOT's first orders of business once the Controlling Board approves the first $25-million in spending.

    Go here to write a letter of support to state officials.

  • In order to better plan how much space to reserve for parking, and answer questions like "should the city continue to mandate one new parking space for every residential unit built?" San Francisco is the first major city in the U.S. to complete a survey of its parking spaces. The sample size (35% of the total) found: 441,541 parking spaces in the city, 280,000 are on street and of those only 25,000 are metered. Read more.

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