Thursday, August 21, 2014  |   Madison, WI: 67.0° F  
CITIZEN DAVE: Thoughts and ideas about city building from Madison's former mayor
Citizen Dave: Protests up, crime down in Madison

Tens of thousands of people every day for more than a month, carrying signs, chanting slogans, waving banners... high emotions, but no violence. Even littering was down with our mall maintenance crews telling me that the crowds were especially careful to pick up after themselves. Downtown Madison was much more peaceful and cleaner during all those protests then it was on a typical football weekend. >More
Citizen Dave: Cities are good for the environment

Chicago is planning for the apocalypse, but it's the apocalypse not now. The Windy City has a 50-year plan to adjust to the slow-moving effects of climate change. Pervious pavement to deal with the heavier rains that will come with more moisture in warm air, reflective roofs to divert heat, and more greenery everywhere are just some of the strategies Chicago is using to mitigate the coming heat. >More
Citizen Dave: Why Ride the Drive deserves to thrive

It wasn't an idea unique to Madison. Bogota had been opening up miles of its streets to bikes and pedestrians on Sundays for years. Chicago had done it and a few other American cities had tried it. But Madison's Ride the Drive did make us an early adopter of this concept. Now virtually every city in the country is trying it or at least talking about it. >More
Citizen Dave: To Madison's high school graduates

My press secretary, Melanie Conklin of good Irish stock, told me that the speaker at a commencement ceremony is like the deceased at a good Irish wake: they need you there to have the party but they don't necessarily expect you to say very much. Combined, you all no doubt have acres of cumulative sheet cake waiting for you someplace, so I'll be brief. >More
Citizen Dave: New Urbanism conference explores cities and vegetables

The Congress for New Urbanism is in town. The CNU is an organization of architects, planners, developers, public officials and others dedicated to the idea that we can build better, greener and more pleasant places to live than what has passed for the standard American subdivision of the last half century or so. >More
Citizen Dave: Home ownership decline not bad for cities

Reports are out today showing that the housing slump continues big time. This may be one of the best things that could happen to American cities. >More
Citizen Dave: This Overture plan can work

There has been some tumult recently as Overture takes steps to transform itself into a new, more sustainable civic arts space. None of that should be unexpected. The debate concluded only just before Christmas, not everyone was happy and it was an issue (though not a deciding one) in the mayoral election and probably in some of the aldermanic races. >More
Citizen Dave: More reasons to invest in Madison

I wrote on Wednesday about why I think more infrastructure investments and continued movement on visionary projects is what Madison needs right now. I wrote about the low interest rates we're experiencing and how much trades people need the jobs. >More
Citizen Dave: Don't worry, be forward-looking

It's May, which is Budget Halloween around City Hall. The idea is to scare the bejesus out of everybody about just how dire the upcoming budget is going to be. I did it for eight years in a row and I wasn't being insincere. >More
Citizen Dave: And now, a blog about cities

When Bill Lueders asked me to do a blog for Isthmus I agreed immediately. But it was just days after the election. If Bill had asked me to drink acid while hanging by my thumbs and watching Oprah, I would have accepted. It had been a long week. >More
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