The City Institute at York University (CITY) is pleased to announced that Professor Marco Facchinetti from the Department of Architecture and Urban Studies from the Politecnico di Milano, Italy will be joining us to speak on “Suburbstalk, Urbanizing the regions, Master planned transformation and the change of urban shapes.” This presentation will discuss recent transformations within growing and changing urban-regions, focusing on typologies of transformation that are driven by transportation or commercial development interests. This presentation will take place on Wednesday February 10, 2016 between 12:30pm and 1:30pm in Room 764, Kaneff Tower, York University.
Next Stop: Equity – Routes to Fairer Transit Access in the Grater Toronto and Hamilton Area, a York University study released today, argues we need to reframe the discussion to consider transit equity, or how to use infrastructure investment and operation to help the greatest number of current and future transit users across the region.
Instead of focusing on equality, where everyone is treated the same, transit equity recognizes that people have different needs, situations and challenges that require different responses.
Research for Next Stop: Equity was funded by Metrolinx and conducted by Roger Keil at the Faculty of Environmental Studies, City Institute researcher Sean Hertel and planning Master’s student Michael Collens. It relied on extensive stakeholder consultations, case study research and an analysis of fares across the 10 GTHA transit agencies.
The study makes 18 recommendations for achieving a more equitable regional approach including:
• developing a GTHA-specific definition of equity that recognizes the diverse needs of the region’s residents, to guide future planning;
• creating a consistent regional framework for transit fares, including discounted passes for low-income residents and more broadly defined groups of students;
• implementing land use planning policies to acknowledge and begin to counteract the displacement of residents created by rising property values along new or improved transit lines;
• ensuring new development near transit stations does not result in a net loss of affordable apartments or displace vulnerable residents;
• augmenting service to employment destinations, especially those trips made in off-peak hours, through a further analysis of evolving commuting patterns, especially outside the downtown core;
• enhancing public consultation techniques, especially in lower income and suburban communities; and,
• improving customer service, including vehicle and station comfort and cleanliness.
Widening gaps between affordable housing and employment opportunities have converged to make transit service disparities especially severe in suburban areas. Overall, the historic lack of transit investment means many living in the “inner ring” or “905” suburbs of Toronto must either have access to a car or find a home somewhere else.
Transit, as target for substantial investment by multiple levels of government, has huge potential to balance out social inequalities. It can connect underserved neighbourhoods to employment centres, enhance mobility and utilize subsidies and other fare innovations to encourage ridership. Transit is quite literally a vehicle for providing access to the community, economy and services that make living a fulfilling life possible.
But the discussion needs to depart from the current situation, where politicians fight over limited funding, change plans mid-stream and build new lines that continue to primarily assist commuters traveling to and from downtown at rush hour.
Next Stop: Equity builds upon last year’s report, Switching Tracks. The extensive research, also funded by Metrolinx, included a series of broad-based roundtables, a review of insights and examples from around the world, summary of the region’s patchwork fare system and case studies of neighbourhoods lacking the transit residents need.
The report, with a focus on how the GTHA’s complex fare structures and boundaries contribute to social inequity, and on case studies that paint a picture of how inequity is experienced, is especially timely. Metrolinx is undertaking a review of its $50-billion regional transit plan, The Big Move, and as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is promising $10 billion in infrastructure investment. Also, the City of Toronto is revising its rail transit lines for Scarborough and introducing new rapid bus lines to create faster connections in the inner suburbs.
While The Big Move already recognizes the benefits of ensuring 80 per cent of residents live near rapid transit, the opportunity is ripe for making transit equity the next stop on the line towards a mobility future where those who don’t have cars or otherwise face obstacles can participate in the full life of the city.
Next Stop: Equity can be downloaded here
AUTHORS & CONTACT INFORMATION:
SEAN HERTEL leads an urban planning consulting practice and is a researcher at
the City Institute at York University, specializing in transit-oriented development,
housing and suburbs. email@example.com / @Sean_Hertel
ROGER KEIL is York Research Chair in Global Sub/Urban Studies at the Faculty of
Environmental Studies at York University and Principal Investigator of the Major
Collaborative Research Initiative, Global Suburbanisms: Governance, Land and
Infrastructure in the 21st Century. firstname.lastname@example.org / @rkeil
MICHAEL COLLENS is a student in the Masters in Environmental Studies program
at York University, concentrating on planning for sustainability and equitability in
public transportation. email@example.com / @michaelcollens
Nicholas Blomley (Professor, Simon Fraser University)
Nicholas Blomley is Professor of Geography at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. He is a geographer, with a general interest in law, and a particular interest in property in land. His work includes the tracing of property in many conflicts and social relations, including gentrification, urban gardening, the municipal regulation of panhandling and, most recently, indigenous-state treaties. His current work focuses on the use of ‘area restrictions’ included in bail and sentencing conditions imposed in the context of criminal proceedings involving marginalized groups of people. He is also part of a large collaborative project exploring the liquidation of Japanese-Canadian property after WWII.
Gerda Wekerle (Professor Emeritus, York University)
Gerda Wekerle is Emeritus Professor a the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University. Her award-winning work focuses on growth, urbanization, sprawl and nature, public policy, local government and local politics, social movements, urban agriculture, and gender and the neoliberal city. Her research and work with women’s organizations in the 1990s successfully led to improvements in Toronto Transit Commission services for women, including requesting stops after 9 pm, designated waiting areas, better camera systems, and a women’s security committee to advise on the design of the Sheppard subway. Dr. Wekerle retired from York University in 2015.
Challenging Traditional Notions of Property in Land Use Planning” – Interdisciplinary Workshop
Property in the common law tradition is conceived as a right to something, whether physical or not, that is disconnected from the object or idea itself. Property interests are almost always hierarchical and exclusionary. An emerging body of property law scholarship is challenging the basic tenets of the discipline, arguing that property law is a form of spatial, temporal order that can function as a tool of governance. This critical legal scholarship posits that the right to exclude should not be considered the core of private ownership, arguing instead that property is rooted in more a complex set of social contract relationships. Interdisciplinary legal geography projects similarly challenge the hierarchical and exclusionary notions of property law and instead embrace a plurality of legal orders and a messy collection of interests.
One key application of this scholarship, both empirically and theoretically, concerns land use planning. Land use planning conflicts over privately owned land use can be used to reveal the complexity of contemporary property relations. A critical challenge is to confront complex property rights that exist in built environments, triggering multiple actors such as local and provincial governments, First Nations, developers, neighbourhood associations and the public. At the same time, legal systems acknowledge that persons are entitled to equal treatment within the applicable administrative and political bodies that shape and resolve planning disputes. To effectively resolve conflicts related to spatial development, a deeper understanding of the complex interactions between land use planning, governance models and resulting property rights is required.
This two-day interdisciplinary workshop will take place June 9 and 10, 2016 with the support of Osgoode Hall Law School and The City Institute. It is aimed at early career scholars – senior doctoral students, postdoctoral students, and new faculty – querying how the planning process can be reimagined in light of emerging property, environmental and administrative legal scholarship, together with important work taking place in geography, urban studies and other social science disciplines. The event itself will be free of charge for approximately 30 invited participants.
The event will showcase Nicholas Blomley (Professor, Simon Fraser University) and Gerda Wekerle (Professor Emeritus, York University) as keynote speakers. The conference will include 6 workshops, each with 3-4 participants, grouped by theme. All participants will be asked to submit papers (maximum 5,000 words), which will serve as the basis of discussion. Each workshop will include a faculty discussant who will provide feedback on the papers. We anticipate publication of workshop submissions in a specific journal issue and/or an edited book. The event is supported by Osgoode Hall Law School and the York University City Institute.
If you are interested in attending, please send a 250 word abstract, together with a one-page cv, to Alexandra Flynn (firstname.lastname@example.org) by February 26, 2016. Accepted participants will be notified by March 4, 2016. Papers will be due by May 13, 2016.
The CITY Institute is pleased to announce its February City Seminar hosting Patricia Wood, a Professor within the Department of Geography at York University. Her research has primarily focused on how human beings attach themselves to place and make a claim to it from the emotional, through to the politics. Her presentation “Why Don’t Chomsky and Zizek Come to a Slut Walk and Announce the Revolution?: The City and the Politics of Protest” will be held on Friday February 5th, 2016 in Room 305 (York Lanes, York University) between the hours of 12:30pm and 2:00pm. This even tit open to all and we hope to see you there.]]>
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For more information on Andrea Gabor’s life and work see http://www.urbanstrategies.com/news/agpassing/
Please join Professor Katherine Bischoping from the Department of Sociology and Zhipeng Gao from the Graduate Program in Psychology will be presenting on “Two Analytic Windows into China’s Intergenerational Bus Seat Conflicts”. The event will be held in the Sociology Common Room (Room 2101 in Vary Hall) York University. This Event is jointly being held by the Department of Sociology, Graduate Program in Psychology, York Centre for Asian Research, and The CITY Institute at York University.
Alexia Yates is Assistant Professor in the Department of History at York University. She is an urban historian and a historian of economic life in modern Europe. Please join us on Friday January 8th 2016 between 12:30pm and 2:00pm in Room 626 Kanaff Tower to sit in Professor Yates talk on Seeing like a Speculator: Making Real Estate in Fin-de-siecle Paris. We hope you can make it.
Professor Carl James is a Professor in the Graduate Program…]]>
Professor Carl James is a Professor in the Graduate Program in Sociology at York University and is the Director for the York Centre for Education and Community. Moreover is he associated with CITY, The City Institute at York University. ]]>
Dr. Susan McGrath is a professor in the School of Social Work in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies. Moreover, Dr. Stephan Gaetz is a professor in the Faculty of Education at York University and the director of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness and the Homeless Hub. Both Professors are associated with CITY, the City Instate at York University.