No Picture

Turning Failed Commercial Properties Into Parks

Source: Miller-McCune

In the language of urbanism, “greenfields” usually means rural land at the metropolitan edge, where suburbia metastasizes. “Brownfields” are former industrial sites that could be redeveloped once they are cleaned of pollution. “Greyfields” — picture vast empty parking lots — refer to moribund shopping centers. Recently another such locution was coined: “redfields,” as in red ink, for underperforming, underwater and foreclosed commercial real estate.

Redfields describe a financial condition, not a development type. So brownfields and greyfields are often redfields, as are other distressed, outmoded or undesirable built places: failed office and apartment complexes, vacant retail strips and big-box stores, newly platted subdivisions that died aborning in the crash. read more

No Picture

Iraq: Division Accomplished

Source: IPS News

Few in Washington want to talk much about Iraq these days.

Eager to avoid refighting the intense political battles over Iraq during the George W. Bush administration, both Democrats and Republicans seem to have tacitly agreed on a set of lowest-common-denominator premises: the initial decision to invade may have been questionable, but the 2007 surge worked, and Iraq is now on a slow-but-sure path to recovery.

Stability and prosperity will gradually improve, or maybe they won’t, but in any case Iraqis will have to sort out their problems for themselves. read more