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Welcome - my name is Kevin Klinkenberg, and this site "The Messy City" is my blog and company website. I started blogging on urban planning and design issues in 2007, and began working in the field in 1993. Please feel free to connect with me on any of the social media sites listed here. Thanks for reading.


Well, this has been quite a year full of change, hasn't it? Everywhere I go, it seems that anyone involved in the world of real estate, whether it be design, building, marketing or otherwise is either contemplating big changes, or undertaking them. Nothing like an historic recession (depression?) to shake up your world. At any rate, welcome to the revamped It's been quite a while since I've posted, for reasons that soon will become obvious. Well, very soon if you keep reading.

The last year has seen the dissolution of my former company - 180 Urban Design & Architecture - and a relocation on my part to the beautiful city of Savannah, Georgia. As I restart this blog, I'll be writing about these topics and much more. For example, I've added a section that you'll soon see called "Life inside a New Urbanist design firm." I'm extremely proud of the work that we accomplished in 10 years as an architecture/planning firm in Kansas City, and will give the readers of this blog an inside look at the workings of design and development - hopefully like no other experience you've read before. And, I'll be writing about life in Savannah and the Lowcountry - not just the beauty of the place, but what we can learn about walkability, community, environmental design and more from this unique slice of America.

Of course, I'll continue to hit all the topics that have been a highlight of this blog for years. For example, I'll continue to write about what I call the Path to Prosperity - how communities can do the little, simple things that make a place more livable, but don't cost a lot of money. It's refreshing to see in the interim how many of my colleagues have finally jumped on the topics that I've been writing and speaking about for years - the value of simple, one story buildings, the need for inexpensive retrofits, creative ways to re-take excess pavement, and much more. I'll tackle these in even more depth in the coming months.

The focus of this blog has always been on how we can expand the core New Urbanist ideals to everyday places, and why it's important for our communities, states and country to do so. In this time of great anxiety in the world of real estate, it's even more important to refocus our attention on long-term solutions, and not settle for solutions that have been bankrupting us for decades. The current economy only highlights the errors we've been making. Buckle up - this is going to be an interesting ride for quite some time.

Finally, I hope to use some new technology to enhance the user experience of this blog. I'll be using vidoes, audio, social networking, polls, and much more in order to make this useful to the readers. As always, please let me know of your thoughts and comments - and especially let me know if you're interested in guest blogging.


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In Defense of "Alternative Lifestyles"

more to come...