New York

Jersey City Joins New York City Bike Share Program

Jersey City mayor Steve Fulop has announced that Brooklyn based Alta Bicycle Share has been awarded a contract to operate a bike share program in his city. Alta operates New York City’s 6,000 bicycle Citi Bike system and was the sole bidder for the Jersey City program. Bike share members in Jersey City will be eligible to use the New York City bike sharing program as well. That means a resident of Jersey City can pick up a bike and…

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NYC’s Next Car Free Zone: Central Park Loop

In the coming weeks, there will be a vote on a bill that will see the city of New York close the Central Park Loop to all automotive traffic for three months in a bid to determine the impact a car-free Central Park would have on NYC’s car, bike, and foot traffic. “Currently, the Central Park loop is packed with cars, cyclists, and runners all vying for limited space; removing cars from the loop will dramatically reduce the risk of…

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The American Dream is a Lie: Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt

One of the most significant books published this year is Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt, a gripping graphic novel reportage mix which skillfully exposes the extreme exploitation and poverty that flourishes on the disenfranchised burned out edges of our nation. This brutal compelling work is a collaboration between Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Chris Hedges, and the revolutionary cartoonist and foreign correspondent, Joe Sacco.

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Promoting a Culture of Sharing: Free Mini Public Libraries

There are few things more beautiful than a public library — a shared community space that encourages study, reading books and borrowing information — such fountains of free knowledge greatly improve our society and our world. Recently many small libraries have been springing up in somewhat unexpected places, from local public parks and urban sidewalks to city phone booths.

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Ithaca Mayor Transforms His Official Parking Space into a Public Park

During his first week as mayor of Ithaca, New York, Svante Myrick gave up his car so that he could walk to his job every day at City Hall. The newly elected 24-year-old official joined 15% of local residents in the city who already walk to work. And even though he does not need it, the mayor is still provided with a central downtown parking spot reserved for his official use. The progressive leader has decided to transform the private parking space into a tiny shared public park.

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NY Foreclosure Mill Mocks Homeless Families with Halloween Party

Just when you thought that corrupt corporate banks and foreclosure companies could not become any more depraved or sickening, we are once again unpleasantly surprised. Joe Nocera at the New York Times just published some appalling photos from the firm’s sadistic homeless-themed Halloween party last year; the images were sent to him by a former Baum worker. The old employee explained that the snapshots were a very accurate representation of the firm’s callous attitudes:

“There is this really cavalier attitude.It doesn’t matter that people are going to lose their homes.”

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10 Most Climate-Ready Cities in the U.S.?

Boyd Cohen, Ph.D. recently came up with a methodology to rank large cities in the U.S. based on how much they are preparing for or trying to counter climate change. He then went on to create and publish a top 10 list of the most “climate-ready” cities. While I think the term “climate-ready” is sort of a mistake, since he focuses more on efforts to stop climate change not adapt to it (which is what I would assume “climate-readiness” would be about), I think the overall idea and methodology looks great.

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Knitter Tagging or Bicycle Cozy?

I am not sure if this is actually a beautiful example of knitter tagging, an elaborate public sculpture, a bicycle cozy security device, or some combination of all of these things. My friend Angela just took this bike photograph on a New York City sidewalk last week; if it is indeed tagging, then this is definitely the most intricate knitting graffiti that I have ever seen.

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“No Fracking Way” — A Hydraulic Fracturing Protest Anthem

Every movement needs an anthem. Whether it is to save a river or end a war, a well written song can clearly communicate the message and rally public support more effectively than hours of speeches and protests. Now the organized effort to end the toxic mining process of hydraulic fracturing has its own song, thanks to the musician Marc Black.

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How Does Your City Compare to Others in Bicycling, Walking and Transit?

An EcoLocalizer reader recently shared a great site of his, Modes of Transportation, that helps you find and compare the percentages of people that use varying modes of transportation to get to work in U.S. cities. That is, you can compare: who walks to work more, residents of New York or San Francisco; who bikes more, residents of your city or Portland; who carpools more, residents of Los Angeles of San Diego; or other things along those lines. The data come…

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Top 10 Most Livable Cities, Maybe

Any study or report of the “Top 10” cities is going to be based on subjective criteria. What is deemed most important to one person, or research team, may not be deemed as so important to another. Nonetheless, we all love Top 10 lists, I think, or are at least drawn in by them. So, I’m sharing with you new rankings of the world’s major cities according to the 2011 Liveability Ranking and Overview created by the Economist Intelligence Unit. Before…

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Big Cities Not Necessarily the Big Polluters

Big cities are often associated with pollution. However, if you look at pollution per capita, some of the world’s biggest cities are actually quite green. One key reason is that people in many big cities use efficient, public transportation more and drive less, and transportation is one of the leading causes of pollution worldwide. Researchers recently examined data from 100 cities in 33 nations to look into these issues in more detail and published their work in the peer-reviewed journal…

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Why Planning for Children Can Make Cities Better for Everyone

Many of the things we need to do to make cities better for children would also make them better for everyone. But many city planners and others who listen to the complaints of mothers often seem more interesting in saying that mothers shouldn’t expect so much and don’t even see the point that a city that is better for mothers and children would be a much better city overall and is a possibility to work towards. Alexandra Lange recently went…

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