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Thought Leadership

Resurgent Streets – After the Pandemic

Resurgent Streets – After the Pandemic Can we make streets greater than before? When the pandemic ends, our streets will experience a social explosion. After months of social isolation and pent-up energy, we can expect a grand revival of all our public spaces. This revival will be obvious in dense metro downtowns that are designed…

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Reframing The Last Mile Dilemma

Reframing The Last Mile Dilemma The “last mile” may not be the last problem For years analysts have decried the “last mile” as the key missing transportation link between employees in urban areas and jobs in sprawling suburbs, located beyond the reach of public transit. Employees cannot access these job opportunities without a car that…

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Navigating the Urban Waterfront

Navigating the Urban Waterfront What is the Value of an Urban Shoreline? Many communities debate the future of their public waterfronts – some want large marinas while others want quiet woodlands. Disagreement about views and easements associated with waterfront development abound. While most communities prioritize parks and public places on the waterfront, there is still…

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Let’s Stop “Isolating” Sustainability!

Let’s Stop “Isolating” Sustainability! Does “Sustainability” Have a Bottom Line? Most comprehensive plans isolate “sustainability” as a separate category and focus almost exclusively on the natural environment as the bottom line.  In practice, planners need to stop “isolating” sustainability as a separate planning issue and ensure consideration of three interlocked components: environmental protection, economic vitality,…

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Will Recovery be as “Novel” as the Virus?

Will Recovery be as “Novel” as the Virus? What goes up must come down. Is the inverse true? Can social routines return to normal after this virus is controlled?  We did, after all, experience tremendous growth following the great recession. This time there is no guarantee. Whether restaurants, shops, and small businesses recover, or wither…

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Continuing the Conversation

Continuing the Conversation The relationship of social justice, equity, and racism with the planning profession. The Planning + Urban Design (P+UD) group at GRAEF believes that planning for stronger communities requires broad, candid discussion. We have such conversations every day with our clients, colleagues, and partners. This article recognizes the relationship of social justice, equity,…

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