Talking Headways Podcast: Houston Spreads Like a Spilled Bucket of Water

This week on the podcast I’m joined by Kyle Shelton of the Kinder Institute to talk about his new book Power Moves: Transportation, Politics, and Development in Houston. Kyle shares why he wrote the book and what it feels like to look back at the city’s development history knowing it could have turned out better. We also talk about the idea of “infrastructure citizenship” and how local transit advocates groups wielded power in past fights against road builders.

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Talking Headways Podcast: Growing Up and Out in Houston

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This week and next I’m joined by Christof Spieler, a vice president of Morris Architects who serves on the board of Houston Metro, to talk about Houston. Everything is bigger in Texas, including the podcasts. Christof tells stories about how planning works in Houston, including how Intercontinental Airport was sited during a backroom deal and how people inside the city think […]

Talking Headways Podcast: The Urban Policy Translator

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This week we’re joined by Shelley Poticha, director of NRDC’s Urban Solutions Program, who tells us about the organization's new programs like SPARCC and the City Energy Project. We get into federal policy like the Clean Power Plan and the story of how FTA and HUD were finally connected, and we talk about The Next American Metropolis, the 1993 book about transit-oriented development she wrote with Peter Calthorpe.

Talking Headways Podcast: They Took Our Jobs… Downtown!

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This week on the Talking Headways Podcast I’m joined by Joe Cortright of City Observatory to nerd out on employment data and discuss their most recent report, Surging City Center Job Growth. We learn how employment cores for many cities are growing and why this looks like a long-term shift. Joe also talks about how they measured […]

The Hilarious 1960s Vision for the Underbelly of a Houston Highway

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Ah, the best laid plans. As Texas DOT considers tearing down the Pierce Elevated Freeway on the east side of downtown Houston, it’s instructive to look back at what people were thinking when they made this eyesore. Kyle Shelton at Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research shares these hilarious drawings from the late 1960s that depict how happening […]

Talking Headways Podcast: More Than Just a Box

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This week I'm joined by Matthew Heins, author of The Globalization of American Infrastructure: The Shipping Container and Freight Transportation. Matthew talks about how the American highway and rail systems created a global standard for shipping containers, containerization’s effects on labor and relevance to an automated trucking future, and the massive intermodal freight terminals in cities like Chicago.

Talking Headways Podcast: The Missions of San Antonio

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This week we’re joined by Trish Wallace and Jillian Harris, transportation planners at the City of San Antonio. Tune in and hear about the history of the San Antonio Riverwalk, the city’s bike master plan, and the inner workings of the SATomorrow Plan. Our discussion of San Antonio’s growth leads us to all sorts of Texas planning […]