Raleigh hosted a "Big Ideas" workshop last week, a brainstorm which produced the predictable golf-ball-sized hail of notions about monorails, artificial rivers, and "filling in the skyline" with lots more tall buildings.
Big ideas are seductive, and they lend themselves well to slush funds and grandstanding. Naturally, politicians love 'em. But (by and large) they're not what makes cities livable.
Rather, city comforts -- also known as "quality of life" -- are all about small ideas: little details, multiplied many times. It's a place to sit in just the right spot, or a colorful new coat of paint on an ordinary building; places for kids to play safely and close to home (above); a crosswalk just where it's needed.
City Comforts author David Sucher says we need to pay more attention to "the small details of cities that really make the difference in our comfort ... the thousands of small details that make up our daily experience."
A steady downpour drenched these mothers and their infants as they waited for a Raleigh city bus on Thursday.
Raleigh has been blessed by abundant rain this spring. As a civic expression of gratitude for the end of drought, what action might Council take? How about furnishing all bus stops with shade and shelter?
It seems odd to us that the Bankers Association is sponsoring a military parade. We don't see the connection. One can only conclude they are planning a mass foreclosure action against soldiers' widows, or something.