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12 Fresh Ideas for Transforming the Places We Live With Open Data

12 Fresh Ideas for Transforming the Places We Live With Open Data | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
A few of the 886 proposals from the Knight Foundation's latest open government news challenge.
Kentlands Downtown's insight:

So many ideas for open sourcing and placemaking in communities

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What Really Matters for Increasing Transit Ridership

What Really Matters for Increasing Transit Ridership | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
For years, many transportation experts thought the success of a city's transit system depended directly on the strength of its central business district.
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A Digital Mixing Board for Your Street

A Digital Mixing Board for Your Street | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
How to rightsize streets the right way and, more specifically, how to help communities picture what's possible when you begin to look at all that asphalt as an editable surface. Go ahead. Add a bike lane.
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Americans eat approximately 100 acres of pizza EACH DAY, or about 350 slices per...

Americans eat approximately 100 acres of pizza EACH DAY, or about 350 slices per... | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Americans eat approximately 100 acres of pizza EACH DAY, or about 350 slices per second. WOW
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Where do MoCo residents walk, bike & take transit to work?

Where do MoCo residents walk, bike & take transit to work? | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
For decades, Montgomery County has promoted transit-oriented development as a way to provide alternatives to driving, but some say it hasn't worked, claiming most people "will drive no matter what." However, a detailed look at commuting habits in...
Kentlands Downtown's insight:

Great to see the percentage of commuters who walk in the Kentlands is double the County wide average.

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Common Spaces: Urbanism, Sustainability and the Art of Placemaking

Common Spaces: Urbanism, Sustainability and the Art of Placemaking | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

As people become more engaged in the movement towards sustainable living, it stands to reason that they will first turn to the immediate environment. Outside the home, the debate is centered on the design and layout of community spaces; this is where placemaking offers valuable insights.

Placemaking, put simply, is the design of public spaces with the needs, desires, interests, and inspirations of the local community at heart. Frequently, this collaborative process can be found in what we might regard as a traditional, outdoor community area; a park or waterfront. However, as localism and sustainability take root within the priorities of decision-makers, we are also beginning to see community-minded design in more unconventional places. Ideal candidates for this new process include, for example, the layout and signage design for public service buildings such as police stations, hospitals and museums.

There are already some fantastic placemaking success stories. Indeed, the implementation of community-minded ideas is so widespread, it is difficult to pick out examples worthy of mention. The cutting edge of urban design is no longer where we design spaces with the public’s desires in mind; it is where we incorporate green thinking and technology into those spaces...


Via Lauren Moss
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The new ruralism: how the pastoral idyll is taking over our cities

The new ruralism: how the pastoral idyll is taking over our cities | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Meadows nestling beside tower blocks, children cavorting in rustic playgrounds, not to mention all those farmers' markets – these days, our cities can't seem to get enough of the countryside...
 
Via Ana Valdés
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Just Announced: Stay & Plays this weekend and next weekend!Saturday, November...

Just Announced: Stay & Plays this weekend and next weekend!Saturday, November... | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Just Announced: Stay & Plays this weekend and next weekend!
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Facebook

Facebook | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

Don't forget, Small Business Saturday is November 24! LIKE this post if you plan to "shop small" on the big day!

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Both the Kentlands Family Barbershop (on the right) and Red Hue Boutique (to the...

Both the Kentlands Family Barbershop (on the right) and Red Hue Boutique (to the... | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Both the Kentlands Family Barbershop (on the right) and Red Hue Boutique (to the left) are preparing their storefronts for opening on Main Street in Kentlands Downtown. Red Hue Boutique is slated to open this Saturday.
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Fleet Feet - Annual Halloween Zombie Fun Run/Walk - November 1st - Fleet Feet Gaithersburg

Fleet Feet - Annual Halloween Zombie Fun Run/Walk - November 1st - Fleet Feet Gaithersburg | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

Do you sleep with a copy of The Zombie Survival Guide under your pillow? Have you been taking detailed notes on The Walking Dead? Have you been drafting your own plan for the zombie apocalypse? Time to put your training to the test at the Halloween Zombie Fun Run on November 1st at Fleet Feet Sports, Gaithersburg.

Fleet Feet Sports, Gaithersburg has announced the date for its Annual Halloween Zombie Fun Run/Walk! On November 1st at 6:30 pm, participants will be chased by zombies on a 3-mile Fun Run/Walk route through the Kentlands/Lakelands neighborhoods!

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Small Business Saturday by American Express

Small Business Saturday by American Express | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

Take a minute to create a free personalized ad for your small business and American Express will give you free geo-targeted online advertising that drives to your website or Facebook page. The ads will be featured in the Small Business Saturday® media plan in November.

 

Make November 24th the biggest day of the year for small business. Join the over one hundred million people who were part of Small Business Saturday last year.

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What Makes a Successful Place?

What Makes a Successful Place? | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

When public spaces work well, they serve as a stage for our public lives. So what makes some succeed while others fail?

 

Great public spaces are where celebrations are held, social and economic exchanges take place, friends run into each other, and cultures mix. They are the “front porches” of our public institutions – libraries, field houses, neighborhood schools – where we interact with each other and government. 

In evaluating thousands of public spaces around the world, PPS has found that successful ones have four key qualities: they are accessible; people are engaged in activities there; the space is comfortable and has a good image; and finally, it is a sociable place: one where people meet each other and take people when they come to visit.

 

Read the complete article for a more detailed explanation of the diagram illustrating the elements that contribute to successful public spaces, as well as the qualitative and quantitative criteria to consider when evaluating any given location or site...


Via Lauren Moss
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Urban Prototyping | making cities better, faster

Urban Prototyping | making cities better, faster | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

Urban Prototyping is a global movement exploring how participatory design, art, and technology can improve cities. Each UP Festival uses its own strategy to uniquely address that city’s specific circumstances – soliciting, testing, and deploying digital and physical projects with high potential for impact.

UP is about more than showcasing great projects – it’s about using those projects to kickstart a movement, and refocus the dialog around how citizens can shape their cities.

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Congratulations to Bad Influence Band on their three Wammie nominations!

Congratulations to Bad Influence Band on their three Wammie nominations! | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Congratulations to Bad Influence Band on their three Wammie nominations!
Bad Influence Nominated For Three Wammie Awards
www.epiphone.com
Official Epiphone site: Buy electric or acoustic guitars, Les Paul electric guitars, or bass guitars.
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How to Build a Better Block

How to Build a Better Block | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

The group brought together all of the resources from the community and converted the block into a walkable, bikeable neighborhood destination for people of all ages complete with bike lanes, cafe seating, trees, plants, pop-up businesses, and lighting.

Kentlands Downtown's insight:

An amazing idea that could be applied to Kentlands Blvd., Exchange St. and more.

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Do Places Seem Farther Away When You Have to Walk to Get There?

Do Places Seem Farther Away When You Have to Walk to Get There? | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Think, for a second: How long would it take you to walk to the coffee shop closest to your home? Less than five minutes? More like 10, 20, 30?
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10 Techniques for Making Cities More Walkable

10 Techniques for Making Cities More Walkable | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
In Jeff Speck’s excellent new book, Walkable City, he suggests that there are ten keys to creating walkability. Most of them also have something to do with redressing the deleterious effects caused by our allowing cars to dominate urban spaces for decades. I don’t necessarily agree with every detail, and my own list might differ in some ways that reflect my own experience and values. But it’s a heck of a good menu to get city leaders and thinkers started in making their communities more hospitable to walkers.

 

Visit the article link to read more details and examples of the author’s ten steps of walkability...


Via Lauren Moss
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The Best Open Data Releases of 2012

The Best Open Data Releases of 2012 | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Our annual look at the extensive information now available from city governments, and the tools people are building with it.

Via Domenico Di Siena
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Congratulations to PMA Honors Brass Trumpeter Bradley Jones on being selected to...

Congratulations to PMA Honors Brass Trumpeter Bradley Jones on being selected to... | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Congratulations to PMA Honors Brass Trumpeter Bradley Jones on being selected to perform with Montgomery Philharmonic for their winter performance!
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Tips for Creating Public Spaces People Actually Want to Use

Tips for Creating Public Spaces People Actually Want to Use | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
One of the most important aspects of any city is its collective commons, so to speak: the shared public spaces where people gather, be they streets, squares, parks, markets, playgrounds, sports facilities, or something else.
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Join us for our annual meeting on Monday, November 26th at 7:30 pm to learn how...

Join us for our annual meeting on Monday, November 26th at 7:30 pm to learn how... | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
Join us for our annual meeting on Monday, November 26th at 7:30 pm to learn how we can all partner to continue to make Kentlands Downtown a vibrant downtown. All are welcome.
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The Secret to Buffalo's Farm-to-Table Culture

The Secret to Buffalo's Farm-to-Table Culture | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
It doesn’t get quite as much ink as Cleveland or Detroit, but the post-industrial urban agriculture and farm-to-fork landscape of Buffalo is thriving.
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What makes a place walkable?

What makes a place walkable? | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it
The main thing that makes Rome—and the other winners: Venice, Boston, San Francisco, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Prague, Paris, and New York—so walkable is what we planners call "fabric," the everyday collection of streets, blocks, and buildings that tie the monuments together. Despite its many technical failures, Rome's fabric is superb.

 

Yet fabric is one of several key aspects of urban design that are missing from the walkability discussion in most places. This is because that discussion has largely been about creating adequate and attractive pedestrian facilities, rather than walkable cities. There is no shortage of literature on this subject, and even a fledgling field of "walkability studies" that focuses principally on impediments to pedestrian access and safety, mostly in the Toronto suburbs.

 

These efforts are helpful, but inadequate. The same goes for urban beautification programs, such as the famous "Five B's" of the eighties—bricks, banners, bandstands, bollards, and berms—that now grace many an abandoned downtown.

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10 Ways to Improve Your City through Public Space

10 Ways to Improve Your City through Public Space | Kentlands Downtown | Scoop.it

Public spaces are increasingly being recognized as a crucial ingredient for successful cities, and for their ability to revitalize and create economic and social development opportunities.


Actually finding ways to build and maintain healthy public space remains elusive to many municipal governments, especially in the developing world. The vast web of streets, parks, plazas, and courtyards that define public space is often lacking, poorly planned, or without adequate citizen participation in the design process.
Recognizing these challenges, the Project for Public Spaces (PPS) released earlier this month a draft of their handbook Placemaking and the Future of Cities. It’s intended to serve as a best practices guide for those wishing to improve the economic, environmental and social health of their communities through the power of successful public space.


10 fundamental principles for placemaking have been identified by PPS as the keys to vibrant, safe, and attractive public spaces:


1. Improve Streets as Public Spaces
2. Create Squares and Parks as Multi-Use Destinations

3. Build Local Economies Through Markets

4. Design Buildings to Support Places

5. Link a Public Health Agenda to a Public Space Agenda

6. Reinvent Community Planning

7. Power of 10

8. Create a Comprehensive Public Space Agenda

9. Lighter, Quicker, Cheaper: Start Small, Experiment

10. Restructure Government to Support Public Spaces

 

Read the complete article for more on developing a positive public realm through the use of local resources, citizen participation, and strategic approaches to urban development...


Via Lauren Moss
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