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By now, those of you who read the APA_NC blog section may say this looks like another of Roger’s travelblogs, and that would be correct.  We can learn a lot about what works and what does not work by looking at other communities and countries.  So, this blog is about Iceland.

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Author: Roger Bardsley, AICP I recently visited the city of Denver, CO and came away with a number of favorable impressions.  I worked in the Denver metro area from 1980-1984 and Denver today is not the city I remember.  First, a little background:  The Denver metro area (as defined by the Denver Regional Council of Governments) is made up of nine counties and 47 municipalities with a population of over three million.  The region uses a fairly consistent grid street pattern and addressing system that covers most of the area. No need to get lost if you can read a map.  Second, most of the sewage is treated by the Metro Denver sewage treatment district, with the great majority handled at one plant in Commerce City (don’t ask about water).  Storm sewer is likewise handled on a regional basis.  The metro area is under one MPO and one Regional Council.  Even better, transit is consolidated under a single district known as RTD.  OK, so that gives the Denver region an advantage over most other fragmented and disorganized metropolitan areas, but still, what they have accomplished is remarkable.  Here are the highlights: Light Rail:  When I worked there light rail was being discussed – lots of talk and lines on the map, but nothing concrete.  In roughly the same time that Charlotte built one light rail line, Denver built nine, covering 85 miles, with a connection to the airport and all of the professional sports venues.  That is an exaggeration since the line to the airport just opened last year, but it is still an impressive track record.  Their downtown transit... read more

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