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DC population grows more than any other local county

The US Census’ newest county-level population estimates show that between 2012 and 2013, the District of Columbia population grew more than any other metro area county.

Loudoun County grew slightly faster by percentage. But even according to that measure, DC is 2nd.

County 2012
population
2013
population
Raw
growth
Percent
growth
District of Columbia 633,427 646,449 13,022 2.1
Loudoun VA 337,248 349,679 12,431 3.7
Fairfax Co VA 1,118,683 1,130,924 12,241 1.1
Montgomery MD 1,004,476 1,016,677 12,201 1.2
Prince George’s MD 881,419 890,081 8,662 1.0
Prince William VA 430,100 438,580 8,480 2.0
Anne Arundel MD 550,175 555,743 5,568 1.0
Baltimore Co MD 817,682 823,015 5,333 0.7
Howard MD 299,356 304,580 5,224 1.7
Arlington VA 221,275 224,906 3,631 1.6
Stafford VA 134,251 136,788 2,537 1.9
Charles MD 150,710 152,864 2,154 1.4
Alexandria VA 146,839 148,892 2,053 1.4
Frederick MD 239,520 241,409 1,889 0.8
Spotsylvania VA 125,772 127,348 1,576 1.3
Fauquier VA 66,526 67,207 681 1.0
Baltimore city MD 622,417 622,104 -313 -0.1

 Cross-posted at Greater Greater Washington.
 
 

March 27th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: demographics, The New America



Is Gaithersburg the next frontier for Capital Bikeshare?

Gaithersburg is considering joining Capital Bikeshare with up to 21 additional stations. But with turbulent bikeshare rollouts in College Park and Rockville, it may not be easy.


Proposed bikeshare stations in Gaithersburg. Map by the author, using Google.

The Gaithersburg City Council is mulling whether or not to join Capital Bikeshare, and how to fund the program if they join. At a meeting on Monday, the council worked out preliminary plans for 8 initial stations, to be followed by around a dozen more later.

Gaithersburg has a growing collection of mixed-use neighborhoods that will someday be connected by the Corridor Cities Transitway. Adding bikesharing to that mix makes sense, and can help Gaithersburg transition to be a less car-dependent community.

But is expansion even possible right now? And if it is, does Gaithersburg have the right plan?

Trouble in College Park and Rockville

Theoretically the next expansion of Capital Bikeshare in suburban Maryland should be underway in College Park right now. But with Capital Bikeshare’s parent supplier company in bankruptcy and reorganization, no new bikes or bike stations are rolling off the assembly line. As a result, College Park’s expansion is on indefinite hold.

Eventually the assembly line will start rolling again. But how long will it take, and how huge will be the backlog of existing orders? It may be some time before anybody can accept new orders.

Meanwhile, nearby Rockville has its bikeshare stations already, but they’re poorly used.

One big problem appears to be that Rockville’s stations are spread too far apart. Instead of placing stations every couple of blocks, Rockville only put one or two stations in each neighborhood. Cyclists have to commit to a long ride to use the system.

Based on the map of proposed stations, it looks like Gaithersburg is shaping up to make the same mistake. It might be better for both cities to rethink their stations, and cluster them together in a smaller part of town.

But implementation details aside, it’s great news to see more and more communities looking to progressive transportation options.

 Cross-posted at Greater Greater Washington.
 
 
 

March 26th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: bike, transportation



Notes from Europe: Moscow, skyscraper city

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

Following the weekend in Amsterdam, it’s time to come home. I’m flying Aeroflot with a transfer in Moscow. If you’re a regular BeyondDC reader you already know about Moscow’s palatial subway and weird perpendicular archway bridge. Did you know Moscow is also home to Europe’s tallest skyscraper?

1,112 foot tall Mercury City Tower would only rank as the 10th tallest skyscraper in the United States, but it’s over 100 feet taller than Europe’s nearest challenger, London’s Shard.


Mercury City Tower under construction in 2012. It’s now complete.
Photo by Mariano Mantel via flickr.

March 24th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: architecture



Notes from Europe: Bikes + streetcars = no problem

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

My destination today, Amsterdam, is simultaneously one of the world’s greatest cycling cities and one of its greatest streetcar cities. It utterly destroys the notion that bikes & trams can’t coexist well. The real enemy to both is streets designed primarily for cars.

That said, Amsterdam does a better job of separating both its bike and tram traffic from cars and from each other than any American city. That’s part of its success.


Amsterdam tram & bikes. Photo by faungg via flickr.

March 21st, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: bike, streetcar, transportation



Notes from Europe: Ride the high-speed rails

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

Today, I ride the high-speed Thalys train from Paris to Amsterdam. The Thalys system covers parts of France, Belgium, Netherlands, and Germany. With top speeds of 186 miles per hour, it’s 24% faster than Acela‘s top speed of 150 mph, and much faster than Acela’s average speed.

Both Thalys and Acela trains are loosely based on French TGV trains, though they both have significant modifications.


Thalys high-speed trains at Paris Gare du Nord.
Photo by Darkroom Daze via flickr.

March 20th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: intercity, transportation



Notes from Europe: 19th Century urban renewal

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

Without a doubt, Paris is home to the world’s most successful urban renewal scheme. The Haussmann Plan was carried out primarily between 1853 and 1870, and significantly contributed to the creation of Paris’ most famous boulevards and its iconic architectural style.

Under the guidance of city planner Baron Georges-Eugène Haussmann, large sections of Paris were demolished and rebuilt along wider, grander, straighter boulevards. And new building regulations were adopted that delineated the height and form of buildings.


Boulevard Haussmann, with its strictly regulated buildings.
Photo by Thierry Bézecourt via Wikepedia.

March 19th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: architecture, history, History of cities, urbandesign



Notes from Europe: Bikeshare goes big

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

Paris’ Vélib’ bikesharing network wasn’t the first in the world, nor even the first with modern characteristics like RFID membership fobs. But it’s the system that made bikesharing famous worldwide. It’s the system that exported the idea around the globe, following its 2007 launch.

Today, Vélib’ has about 20,000 bikes. That makes it the largest bikeshare system in the world outside of China (where the city of Wuhan’s network has a staggering 90,000 bikes). For comparison, New York has somewhere between 4,000 and 6,000.


Vélib’. Photo by Aurel via flickr.

March 18th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: bike, history, transportation



Notes from Europe: Versailles was DC’s prototype

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

Versailles was the seat of the French monarchy for over 100 years, through the bulk of the 18th Century. Its baroque design had a major influence on Pierre L’Enfant’s design for Washington, DC.

This photo shows the palace and the Place d’Armes, but doesn’t it look an awful lot like the westward view from the US Capitol?


Versailles. Photo by Lionel Allorge via Wikipedia.

March 17th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: history, urbandesign



Notes from Europe: Get anywhere on Paris’ amazing Métro

I’m on vacation in Europe until the 24th. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some feature of the city I’m visiting that day.

You can get anywhere on the Paris Métro. This map shows central Paris, with a 500 meter radius (roughly 1/3 mile) circle around every Métro and RER station. The entire city has subway station density comparable to downtown DC. Everywhere is within a short walk of at least one station.


Map by mapsbynik on tumblr.

March 14th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: metrorail, transportation



Notes from Europe: Off to Paris

I’m off for 10 days in Europe. Each weekday until my return there will be a brief post about some interesting urbanist or transportation feature of the city I’m planning to visit that day.

I’ll be spending most of time in Paris, but will also be stopping in a few other places.

Today, enjoy this view down the Avenue de la Grande-Armée, from the Arc de Triomphe.


Paris. Photo by Cameron Wears on flickr.

March 13th, 2014 | Permalink | {num}Comments
Tags: urbandesign



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