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The Smart Grid in 2013: Charged for Growth

The Smart Grid in 2013: Charged for Growth | green streets | Scoop.it

In the past year, the grid has seen some remarkable highs, while also being tested to meet the basic needs of society.


On one hand, big advances have flourished, fundamentally changing the way we power our lives. Roof-mounted solar panels have gone from a costly oddity to a competitive selling point for many homes and battery-powered vehicles have gained traction.

On the other hand, the idea of progress has been challenged by a slew of weather woes that have shaken consumer confidence in our energy infrastructure. A series of intense storms, heat waves and drought made 2012 one of the toughest years globally for the grid in many years.

So what will 2013 bring? The growth of the smart grid.

A new stage is opening - where the public was once ambivalent about the smart grid, consumers are now starting to demand these improvements, spurred by the need to improve reliability, participation and the resiliency to recover from large-scale grid events.

Going into the new year, pressure to rebuild the northeast's grid with more resilience will further boost trends that point towards investment in these smart technologies to continue to expand by over 10% over the next five years.
And while efforts to date have focused on improving the grid's heavy-duty backbone, a look ahead suggests that coming smart grid efforts will reach more directly into everyday life.


Here's what's in store for 2013...

Lauren Moss's insight:

An interesting look at the future of the smart grid, renewable energy and the trends that are shaping the development of these technologies in the coming year.

In addition to energy generation, the article examines infrastructure, energy storage, distributed generation, public awareness, and social networks as communication tools...

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Anatomy of a Smart City

Anatomy of a Smart City | green streets | Scoop.it

The 19th century was a century of empires, 20th century was a century of nation states and the 21st century will be a century of cities...


This outstanding infographic (courtesy of postscapes.com) begins with some information about our current state of urbanization.


Did you know that 1.3 million people are moving to cities each week?! It then explains the need for smart cities and delves into what is required to establish these intelligent connected environments, how the smart city may take various forms in the developing worlds and what specific technologies are necessary to achieve such grand goals in practice.

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Eli Levine's curator insight, December 18, 2014 10:45 AM

There is an evolution taking place where politics, policy, technology, the environment, and the economy all intersect. This movement towards technical, empirically driven local policy making could be our saving grace.This could be the future of government.

Russell R. Roberts, Jr.'s curator insight, December 19, 2014 2:10 AM

A stunning infographic which predicts how urban living will change in this century.  Our age is truly becoming "a century of smart cities."  Exciting times lie ahead.  Aloha, Russ.

Paul Aneja - eTrends's curator insight, December 22, 2014 6:51 PM

What do you think makes a smarter city?

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America's Best Performing Cities in 2014

America's Best Performing Cities in 2014 | green streets | Scoop.it

The knowledge and energy hubs of San Francisco and Texas are among the year’s biggest economic winners.

The top six best performing metros were all tech hubs: The previously mentioned three, plus Provo, Utah; Raleigh-Cary in North Carolina’s Research Triangle; and Salt Lake City. Rounding out the top ten were four Texas cities: Houston, Fort Worth, Dallas and San Antonio. Other tech powerhouses in the top 25 include Seattle at 11 and Boulder at 13.

Energy centers also rank high up the list. This is evident in the strong showing of metros in the Lone Star State, home to seven of the top 25 best performing metros, and five in the top ten. The energy economies of Lafayette (19) and Baton Rouge (21), Louisiana, also place in the top 25 of large metros, the latter of which rose 55 spots in ranking last year alone.

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Norm Miller's curator insight, January 14, 11:39 AM

Connectivity is critical.

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OVT Centraal station: A New Transportation Hub in Rotterdam

OVT Centraal station: A New Transportation Hub in Rotterdam | green streets | Scoop.it

The design of Team CS for Rotterdam Central strives to embed the central station again in the center of Rotterdam. With the development of the High Speed Line (HSL), the design establishes the new station as a major hub in being a part of European transportation network which, in every respect, must be capable to match the efficiency, capacity, comfort, and style of other major stations such as Madrid, Paris, London, and Brussels.

The new building's shape expresses the internal logistics of this transport hub. Marking the onset of Rotterdam's 'cultural axis', the new Grand Central Station points the way to the city's heart...

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BIG Reveals First Renderings for Public Square at London’s Battersea Power Station

BIG Reveals First Renderings for Public Square at London’s Battersea Power Station | green streets | Scoop.it
The New York- and Copenhagen-based practice will establish their first U.K. project with "Malaysia Square," linking Giles Gilbert Scott’s southern entrance to the Foster + Partners' and Gehry Partners' proposed Electric Boulevard high street.

The total redevelopment, led by Rafael Viñoly, FAIA, is estimated at £8 billion, or approximately $9.9 million, with BIG’s public space linking the southern entrance of Scott’s Grade II with the proposed high street, Electric Boulevard, by Foster + Partners and Gehry Partners.

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Urban Reflector: San Francisco's Massive 5M Project Bridges Neighborhoods

Urban Reflector: San Francisco's Massive 5M Project Bridges Neighborhoods | green streets | Scoop.it

Real estate development company Forest City is moving forward with a plan to build a residential and office complex on four acres around the San Francisco Chronicle building, a 1924 structure on the corner of 5th and Mission streets, where the city’s South of Market, Downtown, and Mid-Market neighborhoods intersect.

The design team for the project includes New York–based architecture firm Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF), SITELAB urban studio, and historic resources consultant Architectural Resources Group.

If approved, the scheme—located near the city’s Powell Street BART and MUNI stations—will contain 1.8 million square feet of development, including about 870,000 square feet of offices, 800,000 square feet of residences, 150,000 square feet of ground floor uses, and 34,000 square feet of open space.

In addition to the built structures, the development includes the 12,000-square-foot “Mary Square,” and a 22,000-square-foot green space on the Chronicle Building Roof. Roughly 25 percent of the project’s residences are set to be affordable units.

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Reprogramming the City: New Opportunities for Urban Infrastructure

Reprogramming the City: New Opportunities for Urban Infrastructure | green streets | Scoop.it

Curated by urban strategist Scott Burham, the latest exhibition at theDAC explores the array of untapped potential in our urban environments. Through installations such as a light therapy bus stop and a billboard that converts humidity into drinking water, the show will consider how infrastructure can encourage human interaction, perform alternative functions or assume an entirely new role.

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Norm Miller's curator insight, December 30, 2014 3:38 PM

Design can make a huge difference in terms of livable cities.

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Thomas Heatherwick Greens Pier55 for New York's Lower West Side

Thomas Heatherwick Greens Pier55 for New York's Lower West Side | green streets | Scoop.it

British designer thomas heatherwick is to build a public park and performance space on manhattan’s lower west side. 

Entitled Pier55, the project will replace the dilapidated pier 54 with construction expected to start in 2016. Costing in excess of $130 million USD, the scheme be funded primarily by the diller-von furstenberg family who will work alongside the hudson river park trust in developing the site.

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8 ideas for the future of cities

8 ideas for the future of cities | green streets | Scoop.it

In 2012, the TED Prize was awarded to an idea: The City2.0, a place to celebrate actions taken by citizens around the world to make their cities more livable, beautiful and sustainable. This week, The City2.0 website evolves. On the relaunched TEDCity2.org, you’ll find great talks on topics like housing, education and food, and how they relate to life in the bustling metropolis. You’ll find video explorations of 10 award-winning local projects that received funding through this TED Prize wish, and resources for those hoping to spark change in their own cities. The site will also be the home of all future TEDCity2.0 projects. In other words, it’s an online haven for everyone who wants to create the city of the future.

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Accessibility and Urban Elevators: Urban Link by VAUMM

Accessibility and Urban Elevators: Urban Link by VAUMM | green streets | Scoop.it

Spanish architects VAUMM have found a niche in Errenteria, a town near San Sebastián where they have now completed three ascensores urbanos (‘urban elevators’). The region underwent rapid industrialisation in the 1960s that caused residential construction to climb steep hillsides. The resulting urban obstacle course continues to present problems of accessibility and connectivity for the aging population that the construction was originally designed to accommodate. VAUMM’sascensores act as vertical cross-streets, creating navigable pathways between previously disconnected places. 

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What Copenhagen can teach us about cycling

What Copenhagen can teach us about cycling | green streets | Scoop.it

From ‘green wave’ traffic lights and majestic harbour bike bridges to digital countdowns and foot rests at junctions, the Danish capital is full of clever ideas to improve city cycling...


Via Bentejui Hernández Acosta
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Has Floating Architecture’s Moment Finally Arrived?

Has Floating Architecture’s Moment Finally Arrived? | green streets | Scoop.it

From London to China, the movement to build on the water’s surface is gaining steam.

Floating cities have captivated society’s imagination for centuries, from the development of Venice a millennium ago to Triton, designed for Tokyo Bay by Buckminster Fuller in the 1960s. But it wasn’t until the last decade or so that more fully realized, just-might-actually-happen sea-based urban endeavors have emerged, made more urgent by rising sea levels and rural-to-urban migration. In the last six months, Business Insider, Bloomberg and The Guardian have all run stories asking the same question: “Has the time come for floating cities?”

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Next Up For Brooklyn, an Urban Gondola

Next Up For Brooklyn, an Urban Gondola | green streets | Scoop.it

The East River Skyway aims to alleviate transit congestion along the Brooklyn waterfront by taking commuters off the grid.

The East River Skyway is a proposal for a multi-phase urban gondola to connect the growing residential and commercial corridors between Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. The proposal calls for an aerial transit system to be built out in stages, with the first line connecting the Lower East Side and Williamsburg. Subsequent lines might include a connection between Lower Manhattan, Dumbo, and Brooklyn Navy Yard, as well as a line threading between Midtown, Roosevelt Island, Long Island City, and Williamsburg...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, September 25, 2014 4:31 PM

These become great for residents and tourists but the lawyers often find the liabilities too much of a concern when the gondolas pass over roads, bridges or people in some way.  Hope this one actually happens.

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How San Francisco Is Designing Its Metro Train of the Future

How San Francisco Is Designing Its Metro Train of the Future | green streets | Scoop.it
BART cars are about to get their first real overhaul since the system launched in 1972.

Nearly half a century after the system's launch, BART will get its own long-awaited makeover. The so-called "Fleet of the Future" plan will put between 775 and 1,000 new BART cars on the tracks between 2017 and 2023, at a cost between $2.5 billion and $3.3 billion. But the overhaul is more of a full reimagining than a cosmetic touchup—from the big-picture look of the car itself to the minutiae of floor patterning and handrail grips. BART used the chance to rethink how the trains look on the outside and feel on the inside, how they accommodate the crowds of today and the near future, and how they subtly control rush-hour crowds and all those bicycles...

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Donovan Gillman's curator insight, December 3, 2014 2:54 AM

What SOUTH AFRICAN RAIL NEEDS DESPERATELY

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7 Cities That Are Starting To Go Car-Free

7 Cities That Are Starting To Go Car-Free | green streets | Scoop.it
Urban planners are finally recognizing that streets should be designed for people, not careening hunks of deadly metal.

After over a hundred years of living with cars, some cities are slowly starting to realize that the automobile doesn't make a lot of sense in the urban context. It isn't just the smog or the traffic deaths; in a city, cars aren't even a convenient way to get around.

Now a growing number of cities are getting rid of cars in certain neighborhoods through fines, better design, new apps, and, in the case of Milan, even paying commuters to leave their car parked at home and take the train instead.

Unsurprisingly, the changes are happening fastest in European capitals that were designed hundreds or thousands of years before cars were ever built. In sprawling U.S. suburbs that were designed for driving, the path to eliminating cars is obviously more challenging.

Read further for more on the leaders moving toward car-free neighborhoods.

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Emlyn Davies-Cole's curator insight, January 21, 10:25 PM

This knowledge is not new, Architects, Urban designers, City planners, and Government officials have know of this but it has not been put to practice until now. Cities are meant to be populated with people and not dominated by four wheel vehicles.

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District Hall, Boston’s Public Innovation Center / Hacin + Associates

District Hall, Boston’s Public Innovation Center / Hacin + Associates | green streets | Scoop.it

Opening at the end of October, District Hall is the world’s first freestanding public innovation center, a single-story pavilion dedicated to gathering the innovation community together.  The building is located in the heart of Boston’s Innovation District, a thousand acres of the historically industrial South Boston waterfront that has been transformed  into an urban environment that fosters innovation, collaboration and entrepreneurship.

District Hall will serve as an anchor in this emerging district, a new kind of public infrastructure for the 21st century economy. The building is located at a natural gathering place between the Institute of Contemporary Art, a new public marina, bike-sharing and transit stops, and several parks on Boston’s rapidly developing waterfront.

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It’s Time to Start Building Wooden Skyscrapers

It’s Time to Start Building Wooden Skyscrapers | green streets | Scoop.it
'Plyscrapers,' created out of material similar to Ikea's wooden furniture, may be the future of high-rise buildings.

In 2023, Swedish architecture firm C.F. Møller will transform the Stockholm skyline—and perhaps the very notion of skyscrapers. Last December, the designers won a competition organized by HSB Stockholm to honor the local real estate titan’s upcoming centenary with an ostentatious new high-rise. Møller submitted three designs, but the public latched onto one in particular: a thirty-four story tower made almost entirely out of wood, save for a spindly concrete core and a few steel poles on the ground floor. If constructed, the tower will be the largest mostly-wooden structure in the world. But rather than a one-off, it could be the clarion call needed to rouse the public around a new architectural trend.

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How Five Cities Improved Their Water Supply at the Source

How Five Cities Improved Their Water Supply at the Source | green streets | Scoop.it
According to a new report released by The Nature Conservancy, investing in the water upstream from your city just might help secure water for urbanites. The project, titled Urban Water Blueprint, maps several city’s watersheds by combining hydrological models and data from the City Water Map, to convey where 534 large cities get their water from. The ultimate implication is that there is a more sustainable approach to engineer the water flow to our amenities and even save millions of dollars, as New York City has since adopting the Safe Drink Water Act in the nineties.
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Five cities awarded UNESCO City of Design status

Five cities awarded UNESCO City of Design status | green streets | Scoop.it

Dundee, Bilbao, Curitiba, Helsinki and Turin have been awarded UNESCO City of Design status for their input to the international design industry.


The accolade, awarded by international heritage body UNESCO, recognises the contribution of the five cities to the worldwide design industry – each the first in their respective countries of the UK, Spain, Brazil, Finland and Italy to achieve the designation. The scheme aims to promote the development of local creative industries, and to foster relationships and resource-sharing between fellow Cities of Design.

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Embracing the Future: the Smartest Cities In The World

Embracing the Future: the Smartest Cities In The World | green streets | Scoop.it
These cities that are doing the best at embracing the future are focusing on improving technology, equality, sharing, civic participation, and more.

Over the past several years, the idea of the being "smart" has emerged as a key mechanism for cities to find innovative solutions to the challenges that they are facing. Increased demand for infrastructure, housing, transportation, jobs, energy, food and water are all straining city governments and infrastructure, as people around the world flock to urban centers in hopes of a better life and more opportunity. For many years, the push to create smarter cities was led by technology companies looking for uses (and buyers) for their products. But in recent years, cities have begun to think more holistically about what being a smart city could mean, and have innovated new ways to modernize how a city serves its citizens.

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Irina Miroshnikova's curator insight, December 6, 2014 3:16 AM

добавить ваше понимание ...

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Three Creative Reuses of Aging Infrastructure

Three Creative Reuses of Aging Infrastructure | green streets | Scoop.it

Just outside the Javits Center in New York City, attendees of the 2014 ULI Fall Meeting walked the recently opened final leg of the High Line, which wraps like a veranda around the massive Hudson Yards development site. Inside Javits, speakers at a concurrent session on the creative reuse of aging infrastructure added three case studies to the growing list of success stories proving that development opportunities can still be found in the spaces created by transportation infrastructure...

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Cities Look to Micro Units as an Option for Affordable Housing

Cities Look to Micro Units as an Option for Affordable Housing | green streets | Scoop.it

Chances are, if you live in a city, you live alone. More than half of all adults living in New York, Austin, Denver, and Seattle live by themselves; in Washington, D.C., 71 percent of adults are single. In the United States as a whole, the number of single-person households has quintupled since 1960 and now represents 27 percent of the total, according to census figures.

This dramatic change in demographics, coupled with the recent economic crisis and growing environmental concerns among the general population, is affecting attitudes about lifestyle. Americans are shifting from having more and consuming more to being content with less—particularly when it comes to house size. A smaller home means less to heat, less to furnish, and less to maintain. And, generally speaking, less out of pocket.

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Norm Miller's curator insight, December 30, 2014 3:40 PM

What we call a micro unit in California is anything under 650 Sq Ft, but that is close to the average unit size in many countries throughout the world.  Still, if we want to make housing affordable to key to be sure our land use regulations do not prevent smaller sized units.  This is much preferable to housing linkage fees which distort the market and result in higher land prices for affordable housing developments as the subsidies go straight to higher land values.

Katherine Correll's curator insight, January 13, 12:39 AM

A trend of doing more with less paves the way for more units in the same space. 

Looking forward to the February 4th City Builder Housing dialogue.

http://www.scoop.it/t/green-streets

 

 

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OMA and Olin win competition to design garden bridge for Washington DC

OMA and Olin win competition to design garden bridge for Washington DC | green streets | Scoop.it

Rem Koolhaas' firm OMA has teamed up with Olin to create the 11th Street Bridge Park – a raised garden spanning Washington DC's Anacostia River.

Netherlands-based OMA and Olin beat three other design teams to win a government-supported competition to design a bridge that could provide a new "civic space" for the USA's capital city.

The project, currently expected to cost $35 million (£22 million), was proposed to find new uses for a series of piers that previously supported a major road crossing across the Anacostia River, which has been moved to a new location.

The new design is comparable to New York's popular High Line park andThomas Heatherwick's garden bridge proposal for the River Thames in London.


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Stress and the City: innovative housing solutions for urban centers

Stress and the City: innovative housing solutions for urban centers | green streets | Scoop.it

It's a well-known story by now: in the wake of a shift toward city living, and as housing prices continue to rise and wages stagnate, middle-class Americans are being squeezed out of urban centers. The problem is not isolated to high-cost cities. A New York Times analysis found that median rent is more than 30 percent of the median income in 90 U.S. municipalities, surpassing the federal government's benchmark indicating when a household becomes “burdened.” Nationwide, half of renting households spend a third of their gross income on rent, while their median income hovered at $32,500 in 2012 (as compared to $50,500 for all households)—approaching its lowest level in nearly 20 years, according to the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. To combat this trend, staving off an exodus of the workforce and addressing growing income inequality, a number of cities are experimenting with a range of innovative ideas to create affordable housing.

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5 Cities Revolutionizing the Role of the Urban Train Station

A recent Washington Post feature entitled “Reimagining Union Station,” discusses the proposed expansion and redevelopment of Union Station in Washington, DC, a transit hub with the daily task of servicing nearly 100,000 train, bus, and subway passengers.

Despite its vital and iconic qualities, the Station suffers from a variety of structural and programmatic inefficiencies, and reminds us of the effects transportation-oriented design has on an urban environment, and the importance of maintaining a high degree of density within our cities. In the article, several other stations around the world are highlighted — particularly Grand Central Station in New York City, as good examples of how train stations ought to be designed. Stations such as the SSB Train Station in Basel, Switzerland, the Berlin Central Station in Germany, the Salzburg Central Station in Austria and the redevelopment plans for Los Angeles's Union Station match his description, both honoring the commuter experience while enhancing their larger role within the urban environment...

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How Will Automated Cars Change Landscape Architecture?

How Will Automated Cars Change Landscape Architecture? | green streets | Scoop.it

A look at how the inevitable technology of automated cars will change the face of landscape architecture.


Our cities were built to be the backbone support of the industrial revolution. Our roads were built to accommodate the car and truck. Our soil is radically altered due to fertilizers and farm practices of the past. Time and time again we can look at the trend of technology being introduced and a few decades later it fundamentally changes the way we look at the landscape...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, September 25, 2014 4:34 PM

Parking lots can now be further away and we will be able to work while in our cars without endangering others.  Suburbs can be further away.  We will change our cars to be more like mini offices and lounges.  Sounds great to me.  

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Urban Plunge: Swimming in the City

Urban Plunge: Swimming in the City | green streets | Scoop.it

An exhibition at the Roca London Gallery presents a series of architectural proposals to reclaim natural water sources in London, New York and Copenhagen for recreational use. We spoke to curator Jane Withers about how we can better exploit our rivers and harbours.

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