Monday, June 27, 2011

A Great Lakes Experience

Is Unsalted - A documentary on surfing the Great Lakes.

There are people who don't mind driving eight hours for maybe three hours of potential surfing.

Via Adventure Journal: More Core than Core: Surfing the Great Lakes

But a whitewater park provides steady conditions year-round and can be designed to accommodate surfers.

A whitewater park would give Traverse City another destination experience.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Your Speed

Is based on a feedback loop.

And you can be made to decrease your speed by 10% without even realizing it.

This is why a 'Your Speed' radar display is going up on W Front St.

Wonder how this works?

See Wired: Harnessing the Power of Feedback Loops

If you like this kind of thing then pick up a copy of the book Nudge.

1000 To 50

1000 commercial fishing licenses in Michigan to 50 today according to the Environment Report series Swimming Upstream which is investigating why it is so hard to find Great Lakes fish at your local market or restaurant. has more on Petersen Fisheries which is featured in the IPR story.

The next episode is about selling fish at the local Farmer's Market and how successful that has been for The Fish Monger's Wife.

So the next steps seems obvious, a CSF.

Community Supported Fisheries act like a CSA and allow you to get your fish directly, without a middleman. It means jobs for commercial fishers and fresh fish for consumers.

The most recent CSF I have read about is Off The Hook CSF in Halifax.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

From Omaha to Old Town

After college a friend of mine moved to Omaha for a job in train logistics. That made sense to me. Rail yards and cows are what came to mind when I thought of Omaha. But that was as shortsighted as only thinking cherries when talking about Traverse City.

NPR and Wired have both recently covered the rise of Omaha.

NPR details how an arts destination can anchor professionals to the downtown: The Indie-Rock Club Behind Omaha's $100 Million Creative Boom

This sounds a lot like the plans for Old Town between Blue Tractor and the new Good Works Collective (See Northern Express: Room for a thousand and TheTicker:
New Performance Venue Coming to Old Town TC)

Wired details the phases of Omaha becoming a cultural mecca - focusing on food then arts then youth then parents: Case Study: Omaha, Nebraska (h/t glhjr)

If Omaha can do it we can too.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

What I Have Been Saying

It is pretty clear, via FastCompany: Building More Roads Only Causes More Traffic
a study from the University of Toronto confirms it: Expanding highways and roads increases congestion by creating more demand

And in a related piece, in the 1960's Vancouver abandoned an idea to add a freeway to the downtown: The Vancouver That (Thankfully) Never Was
As a result, incoming traffic to the downtown core has dropped by approximately 20% over the past decade.

Another result is Vancouver has been ranked the most livable city in the world five years running.

So to summarize - more roads lead to more people driving which leads to a less livable city. Conversely, more people capacity leads to greater livability.