Monday, December 6, 2010

Being in the Big D

One thing I love about going to Dallas is sitting in traffic.

Especially on a sunny Saturday afternoon, not a "rush hour" in sight for at least another day.

It always makes me realize how easily traffic flows in Memphis (an asset that's easily overlooked b/c it's an absence of a problem). The average Memphis daily commute might be around 20 minutes or so, but we don't -- generally -- have the hours-long traffic snarls of some other cities.

[To be fair, Dallas is figuring out new ways to deal with those snarls -- one of them being the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) system, which is opening a new 28-mile, 20-station rail line this morning. The $1.8 billion project now means the system is up to 72 miles long.]

Thursday, December 2, 2010

I Wish This Was Here.

I love this project.

Artist and urban planner Candy Chang had stickers printed up that say "I wish this was __________." Then she distributed for free in cafes, bookstores, bars, and beauty shops:

"The stickers are custom vinyl and can be easily removed without damaging property. It’s a fun, low-barrier tool for citizens to provide civic input on-site, and the responses reflect the hopes, dreams, and colorful imaginations of different neighborhoods."

Chang says she likes to make cities more comfortable for people, which I think is a pretty great goal. And the results are exactly what you'd expect: hopeful, inspiring, funny.

This kind of reminds me of what happened on Broad Avenue a few weeks ago, but I think the folks on Broad took it a little further and actually created those things, albeit temporarily. Either way, very cool.

To learn more — Chang has apparently had a lot of interest from people in other cities — visit