PlanPhilly

Infrastructure

    • Satellite photo showing proposed Midvale CHP site in relation to other SEPTA facilities

Environmentalists boo as SEPTA Board OKs natural gas power plant in Nicetown

SEPTA’s monthly board meeting ended in contained chaos Thursday afternoon as a small cadre of environmental activists protested the board’s authorization of a proposed natural gas cogeneration plant near the Midvale…

    • TWU Local 234 workers rally Friday night and distribute strike signs for the picket lines (Brad Larrison for WHYY)

Deviated SEPTA: As Nov. 1 transit strike deadline nears, still no deal

Negotiations between SEPTA and its largest union continued over the weekend but accord on a new labor contract remained elusive as Monday’s midnight deadline to avert a strike inched hours closer.…

    • Bend it like Benjamin | Convicted Melon
VIEW MORE

ABOUT INFRASTRUCTURE

Infrastructure like roads, water pipes, and sewage systems is simultaneously the most crucial element of urban form while also being the least appreciated.  These forms often run below ground and out of sight and are typically paid for by government agencies, so builders and users alike often take their efficient construction for granted.  However, most infrastructure is very expensive to produce and absolutely necessary for successful urban design. Though its form is rarely seen or acknowledged when it’s working properly, its function can make even the most beautiful of streets an experiential nightmare.  It represents the building blocks of our built environment, and therefore typically comes first in most urban construction.


An important discourse on infrastructure planning, especially in today’s times of factoring energy consumption into the planning process, comes from the suburbs, where low-density developments are built on undeveloped land without previously laying the infrastructure foundation necessary to ensure that the homes are habitable. The sprawl requires local governments to extend public services out to reach these faraway developments, the cost of which can be exorbitant.  In fact, the square footage necessary to connect these distant communities often yields projects that are too expensive to cover with tax payments.  The current trend in planning toward “smart growth” initiatives encourages building in previously developed areas.  These areas are typically well-served by traditional forms of infrastructure.  This infrastructure provides important connections, but it is often aging and therefore requires millions of dollars in upkeep and maintenance, which city governments cannot afford on their own.  This is why infrastructure was central in President Obama’s economic revitalization strategy, highlighted by the “stimulus” bill, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN INFRASTRUCTURE

VIEW MORE

Logging in via Facebook

Log in

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Which weekly emails would you like to receive?