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VIDEO: Asset Management Meltdown

Posted on June 3, 2014
Written by André Voshart
This is a must-see video: Ian Woodbury, CEO of Riva Modeling Systems, addresses aging infrastructure and asset management in this rant-style YouTube video:   [...]

VIDEO: Urban Sinkhole Devours Cars and Pavement

Posted on May 2, 2014
Written by André Voshart
Watch this astounding landslide which took place earlier this week in Baltimore: [...]

How Will History Remember Us?

Posted on May 1, 2014
Written by Alec Hay
Do you ever wonder what kind of city our children will inherit? The fact of the matter is that our generation is consuming more than we produce. We are also investing less in our infrastructure than previous generations, and our legacy will be more liability than asset, constraining the next generation’s economic progress before it has even begun. Irrespective of why and how we have got here, what we are going to do about it? What distinguishes dreams from vision is a clear understanding of our current situation. Our context is changing. Extreme weather [...]

VIDEO: Todd Latham on Infrastructure Spending

Posted on April 8, 2014
Written by Todd Latham
ReNew publisher Todd Latham talks about how Canada needs to catch up on infrastructure spending: [...]

Celebrating 30 Years of the Mac: A Triumph for City Builders?

Posted on February 11, 2014
Written by Glenn Miller
Thirty years ago this January, Steve Jobs unveiled the Macintosh—the first mass-market personal computer. The Mac was a compact beige box that allowed high-tech neophytes like myself instant access to the world of word processing and more. It was on one of those early Macs that I wrote the script for a short corporate video for Marathon Realty in 1987—literally the first time I had ever touched a computer. A lot has happened in the intervening decades—to the City of Toronto as well as computers. I am writing this blog on a paper-thin Apple laptop [...]

What Snow Tells Us About Urban Design

Posted on February 7, 2014
Written by André Voshart
Massive snowfalls may provide a glimpse into the inefficiencies designed into our transport networks. In response, North Americans are using the snow, and Twitter with the #sneckdownhashtag (a combination of "snow" and "neckdown," another name for a curb expansion), to show how roads and sidewalks could take vehicle-made snow patterns into consideration when reconsidering how to approach urban design. During this week's massive snowstorm, ReNew Canada publisher Todd Latham took to the chilly streets of downtown Toronto and photographed the following at Adelaide [...]

VIDEO: Crocheted Locomotive

Posted on February 4, 2014
Written by Renew Admin
Polish artist Olek has just completed work on what may be her largest piece ever: a four-car locomotive covered in crocheted yarn in Lodz, Poland. The eye-catching project was completed over a four-day period, working tirelessly with four assistants until the technicolor train emerged.   [...]

Investing in Ourselves

Posted on January 9, 2014
Written by Chris Loreto and J.C. Bourque
Canadian governments at all levels are facing an increasing state of disrepair in important public infrastructure. The 2012 Canadian Infrastructure Report Card estimates that, on average, 30 per cent of municipal infrastructure (water, wastewater, stormwater, and road systems) is in fair or worse condition, with an estimated replacement cost of more than $170 billion. This same report also laments the inability of governments to properly monitor and manage their infrastructure assets. Years of under-investment combined with a fundamental lack of asset management [...]

Municipalities Must Take Lead in Energy Planning

Posted on December 4, 2013
Written by Rick Goldring
In Canada, we often take for granted that energy is widely available. Whether we are turning on our lights, heating and cooling our homes, or fueling our vehicles, energy is everywhere. Energy is central to our lives—it is a high profile commodity and the subject of daily newscasts, headlines, and water-cooler conversations. We do seem to take notice, however, when there is a spike in costs, a brownout, or a severe storm that knocks out power. As well, the world oil market is more volatile than ever and prices have increased due to higher production [...]

There Will Be Casualties

Posted on November 15, 2013
Written by André Voshart
This fall, I attended Meeting of the Minds in Toronto, an engaging conference that is a TED Talk cross-bred with urban resilience. The event prides itself on thought leadership, and it had the minds both on stage and in the audience to back it up. The air was electric, and as a relative newbie to the infrastructure game, I found it  enlightening. MarySue Barrett, president of the Metropolitan Planning Council in Chicago, led one of the first sessions. While she may be from a big city, Barrett said that when she sees smart places (regardless of their size) [...]
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