Throwback Thursday: Spokane, Washington’s Waste-to-Energy Plant’s New Recycling Center Design [The GRID]

Spokane, Washington’s Waste-to-Energy Plant’s New Recycling Center Design

This article was inspired by the Capital Facilities Planning course with Dr. Gregg Dohrn, a beloved planning professor of EWU. This was no longer hot news, but I was still happy to write about it nonetheless: not many mid-sized cities have such comprehensive recycling programs, let alone their own waste-to-energy plant!

This was the third article I wrote for The GRID. Please make any comments on The GRID, not here! It’ll make me look good to my boss! Thank you.

This was originally posted on Global Site Plans‘ blog, The GRID, June 20th, 2012.

Image credit: linked directly to source.


Wordless Wednesday: A Very Wordy Public Art Rant

Public art is usually something like this:

It’s an abstract sculpture, usually a low-maintenance metal like galvanized steel, and just plopped somewhere green like this marina or the center of a traffic circle. But does anyone know where this is? Does this have anything that says, “X Location,” screaming out at you? Is it in North America? Is it in Europe? Is it from a place that identifies itself with Western culture, or Eastern? How do you know? Could it possibly be a concept rendered in an advanced 3D program? Smooth metal is, after all, one of the easiest things to render… This piece is so impersonal, it isn’t memorable at all. Vancouver, BC, you have done so many rights, but this just feels weak.

Why isn’t more civic-purchased public art be specific to their community? Is it just a ‘safer’ investment to simply purchase non-specific works? Who would be mad over purchasing or commissioning something more personal to the municipality they reside in?

This is one of the wind sculptures in my hometown of Stevenson, Washington. Stevenson is in the National Scenic Area of the Columbia Gorge. This edges on my point of making public art more personal to the municipality which it resides in, but still doesn’t hit it spot on- it is, after all, still a bunch of abstract shapes pieced together cast in mostly steel. The only difference here is that all of the pieces move with the wind. Stevenson is in the heart of the Wind Surfing Capital of the World, aside from a few places in New Zealand, and we get constant winds- not gusts- of 30mph many days of the year. Note that while this sculpture has been there long enough for the large circular rusty piece near the bottom, hooligans have never sought out to break the delicate multi-colored glass pieces highlighting each branch. It’s slightly more memorable than the piece above because it has multiple coors and it actually moves constantly.

Any guesses on where this piece is? Who bought it? Why?

This is in Parc de Chaudfontaine, Belgium, a city park. This was created by Mehmet Ali Uysal for the city. It makes someone think from another angle of man’s domination over the Earth, no? Does it scream Belgium? Probably not to Americans, or anybody who hasn’t been there. It’s very unique and memorable, however, and because it’s in Belgium it hasn’t been graffitied whatsoever.

I bet that’s a pain to mow.

So, what would your city’s unique public art piece look like? Would it be a sculpture, painting, or a secret viewpoint of a bridge that only then revealed its true genius? Let myself and everyone else know in the comments below!

Photo Credit: linked directly to source page.

Being a Planning Intern: WELCOME TO CHENEY

[If you haven’t already seen this video… It’s a must for those who know Cheney/the incredible amount of time that EWU students have on their hands or just have 4 1/2 minutes to kill.]

Two weeks ago, I started two internships: one with the City of Cheney‘s Planning Department, the other with the City of Cheney’s Parks Department. I am doing mostly graphics, research, and maybe some GIS analysis for the Planning Department. I am serving as the backbone for the new Cheney Parks Comprehensive Plan performing the writing, research, and graphics work. I will also be helping with the participatory planning/public meeting side when the the comes to present. I do odd jobs (ex: data entry, presentation document organization and formatting) for both departments.

While research is inherent in academia, I haven’t taken a single planning course that pertains specifically to any of these activities besides the introductory GIS elective I took by choice that is technically taught through the Geography Department at EWU by a professor from WSU and is not a part of the EWU Planning Department for some ungodly reason unbeknownst to me.

These are both unpaid, though I hope to receive college credit the next few quarters through EWU. I dedicate about 10-20 hours per week to both departments, depending on my restaurant job’s hours any given week which, for now, takes precedence.

This series will discuss my experiences, be they triumphs or failures, with both departments. I’m not exactly sure what the format will be yet, so any suggestions or requests for the focus(es) of this are very welcome: leave in the comments section below!

Throwback Thursday: Uses of Social and Participatory Mediums in Urban Planning [The GRID]

Uses of Social and Participatory

Mediums in Urban Planning

How all pubic meetings truly feel…

This is one of the topics which was forced upon me, rather than the usual I’m-the-boss-of-my-own-writing mindset. I had no idea what I was going to say about the topic until I just sat there in front of my keyboard until I simply wrote what came to my mind first. I look forward to writing more on this topic throughout my academic and professional careers. I hope to put some of this knowledge to good use during my other internships while aiding in the public feedback and meeting process.

This was the second article I wrote for The GRID. Please make any comments on The GRID, not here! (The title at the top of this post doubles as a hyperlink to the original article on GSP!) Make me look good to my boss, please!

This was originally posted on Global Site Plans‘ blog, The GRID, June 6th, 2012.

Image credit: linked directly to source.

Wordless Wednesday: A Whole New Level of Green

Photo Credit: linked directly to source page.

Happy Belated Birthday, The Comprehensive!

Happy belated birthday to The Comprehensive (formerly known as Isteacian.) The first post ever was on my dad’s birthday, 8/8/2011, and was ‘Why I Enjoy Urban Planning’.


This map shows how many views The Comprehensive has received since February 25th, 2012 (the farthest back possible) to today (8/14/2012) in each country that has accessed any page on the site within that time frame. I imagine The Comprehensive is probably popular in Turkey due to my work with Global Site Plans’ The GRID. This does not include the highest daily view count ever which was 53 views on February 23rd, 2012. On that day, the third installment of the Comparative Book Review series (Jacobs v. Garvin) was published: Revitalizing Neighborhoods.

Data and map courtesy WordPress Stats.

Re: LEGO Street Art

To read the first post on this subject, please click here.



October 2011, Germany. Train bridge turned safe bike/pedestrian crossing.


Now, I promise: no more LEGOs.

Would you like to see this sort of Street Art focus on a weekly basis? Let me know in the comments!

Via the always inspiring blog ‘This Is Colossal.’
(I highly recommend it. It doesn’t focus on any particular subject, but rather extraordinariness. It’s one of the newer blogs to my RSS feed, but I have gobbled up every post with excitement.)

Original Here (in German).

Photo credit: linked directly to source page.