Placemaker News Miscellany, 11.26.2007

With the News
now up and running, it’s tempting for me to make note of a sample of
stories of interest to the placemaking audience: 

• Chicago’s Green Alleys initiative is featured in an article published in today’s
New York Times
, which notes that the city’s paved alleys represent an area
equivalent to “five midsize airports.” The initiative’s project manager, Janet Attarian, asks in the article,
“if you’ve got to resurface an alley anyway, can you make it do more for
you?” In addition to reducing the volume
of stormwater runoff (and consequent public and private cost), attention
focused on alleys could lead to a broader, fruitful discussion about using this
land more productively in a financial and economic sense.

• Relocating a State Fairground is bound to be contentious,
as is the case in Lincoln, Nebraska, where university officials have
proposed construction of a research campus financed via public-private
partnership. Read a short column by University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chancellor Harvey Perlman here.

• Market jitters today are pushing
the price of Treasury bills and notes up
, as investors migrate toward
securities with minimal risk. The result
of increased prices for these bonds is to reduce yields or interest rates. For placemakers using private or public
capital, this will be a critical dynamic to monitor, with the hope that we
avoid combined low-growth, inflationary condition known as “stagflation”
experienced in the ‘70s.

Donjek Service: News Service for Placemakers

How do you invest the time to gather credible, relevant
information about change in planning, architecture, real estate and public
finance, while managing projects and marketing activities?  Professionals in firms and agencies alike require credible, current information about the trends that shape the future of planning and development.


In addition to Donjek
consulting projects and decision tools, Donjek is now also the source for a
custom news service for you and your staff, delivered every weekday to your
PC. Details:

What topics are featured? The Donjek News Service provides news,
research and other stories about planning, real estate development, interest
rates and economic conditions, governance, energy and the environment. These are gathered from worldwide sources and
distilled to ten to thirty items per day based on your firm’s preferences and
areas of focus. No chaff – just content
you need.

I’m a newspaper type,
I’m not very computer savvy, and I don’t need more technical complications.
The mechanical side of Donjek News Service is
set up by professional web designers and programmers, so that news is delivered
to your internal website (or intranet) or public website automatically, every
weekday. Readers need only point and
click to stay current. 

I already check
websites for two major dailies and other favorites every day.
The Donjek News Service monitors daily
newspapers around the world for news about relevant trends. The Donjek News Service also monitors posts
by credible weblogs (“blogs”), of which there are 120,000 new blogs established
daily. The “blogosphere” publishes
nearly twenty posts (like the one you’re reading) per second. Let us pluck the best from the field, add it
to your existing favorite sources, and deliver it to your firm’s intranet. 

What’s next? Call Jon Commers at Donjek for more
information, at 651.645.4644 or via email at commers (at)