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Transit – The Babuk Report

Category: Transit

  • Lessons Learned From Both of the Post-war Development Periods

    The changing economy and its effects on the retail streetscape may be best studied in the pre-war and post-war streetscape: pre and post First World War. This particular timeframe holds fascination as it depicts a landscape before and after the automobile’s influence. Oak Park offers another excellent set of examples: it has both types of […]

  • Mechanized Bridges in Portland

    The American Institute of Steel Construction published a story I wrote for their monthly newsletter’s ” Bridge of  the Month” feature.  The story follows: Waddell & Harrington, Consulting Engineers of Kansas City, built many of their patented bridges at many locations throughout the U.S. One example is the Hawthorne Bridge in Portland, OR, spanning the […]

  • Departing Chicago?

    A recent editorial cartoon depicted Illinois as an airport. In the departures gate were the 2016 Olympic Games, a variety of major trade shows that recently announced leaving Chicago, and Oprah Winfrey.    In the arrivals gate were prisoners being transferred from Gitmo.  Much of this is directed at Chicago specifically:  the “departures” noted are all […]

  • Convenient Access by Car

    While early industrialists had grand visions of mechanized buildings and cities that walked, many of those ideas were whimsical at face value.  Mind you, when applied as small parts, they were very useful – like the passenger elevator.  One of those side concepts probably came to be applied to personal transportation – the automobile – […]

  • If Buildings Could Walk…

    A previous post described “if walls could talk”, but what about if buildings could walk? It’s not that far fetched an idea.  Taking cues from the railroad industry, it wasn’t uncommon at the turn of the 20th century to find fixed structures – buildings – with large moving parts.  Bridges were prime examples.  It took […]

  • One Last Bit about the Morning Commute

    Just to wrap up the past couple posts: When North American cities were first developing, we commuted on foot.  It had its limitations, was endured during inclement weather, but gave us exercise. Various forms of mass transit came to be, which allowed for a larger commute area.  The commute in to work became something social: […]

  • Architecture in Motion

    A colleague described a project in Atlanta years ago.  It was a building sited off of an expressway.  Although the building was envisioned to have the typical sort of menu of architectural experiences – approach, enter, inhabit – it was noted that most people would experience this building differently.  Most would experience this building while […]

  • Is your morning commute still fun to drive?

    Time was, driving was a fun recreation.  From a casual Sunday excursion, to a cross country trip, to something energetic like Nascar racing, the experience generated by being catapulted through ever changing scenery was exciting. Automotive design enhanced the experience. Swooping masses of sheet metal clad in bright colours, outlined in shiny chrome, housed behemoth […]

  • Architecture as a Machine

    Many early-modern architectural theoreticians were impressed by inventions of the machine age.  Some, like French Architect Le Corbusier, promoted the concept of architecture as a “machine for living”.  Still others, like Mies van der Rohe, spoke of the ‘machine aesthetic”. From that same historical period, one may find many examples of “architecture as a machine” […]

  • A Tale of Two Cities – the Skyscraper and the Suburb

    The Frank Lloyd Wright Studio in Oak Park Oak Park, Illinois is known throughout the world for its revolutionary architecture that defined the American suburb.  From his Oak Park studio on Chicago Avenue, Frank Lloyd Wright and his entourage created the suburban home format on a basic grid-iron layout of streets; they developed an entirely new […]