Isthmus Sponsors Land Use Conference


The prospects for regionalism, of Madison and its outlying communities forging a common agenda of interests, is the subject of a two-day seminar Sept. 28-29 that will feature several national speakers on urbanism.

The conference–Nolen in the New Century: A Symposium on the Regional Realities of New Urbanism–will also examine whether traditional neighborhoods, AKA New Urbanism, with their mixed uses of residences and commerce, skinny streets, smaller lots and high level of public amenities have a future in the suburban setting.

Speakers include former Albuquerque Mayor David Rusk, whose book Cities Without Suburbs has been called “the bible of the regionalism movement” by Congressional Quarterly.

David Brooks, author of Bobos In Paradise, will discuss the rise of “latte towns” like Madison and the enduring influence of urban thinker Jane Jacobs.

Jeff Speck, a town planner and co-author with celebrated New Urbanists Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, will discuss their work at Middleton Hills and their new book, Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream.

In a related appearance, Speck will also address a breakfast meeting of Downtown Madison Inc. on Sept. 28.

UW-Madison environmental historian William Cronon, author of the award-winning Nature’s Metropolis: Chicago and the Great West, will talk about the protection of natural and cultural landscapes in the 21st century.

The conference, to be held at Edgewood College, is inspired by the pioneering work of urban planner John Nolen, whose 1911 city plan for Madison guided 90 years of city growth.

Conference sponsors include Isthmus Publishing Co., WISC-TV Channel 3, 1000 Friends of Wisconsin Land Use Institute, Foley & Lardner, the Center for Democracy in Action at Edgewood College, the Center for Wisconsin Strategy and the Wisconsin Realtors Association.

The conference fee is $55, which includes a reception, lunch, bus tour of the East rail corridor and conference poster. Seating is limited, so an early response is advised.

For more information, contact Marc Eisen at Isthmus (251-5627; or David Cieslewicz at 1000 Friends (259-1000;, or check the Isthmus Web page: