Jay Walljasper

Jay Walljasper, editor of OnTheCommons.org and author of All That We Share and The Great Neighborhood Book, writes widely about cities, community, sustainability and travel. On The Commons is a commons movement strategy center.

Articles by this author

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Tuesday, October 31, 2017
Bike Breakthrough: Connecting neighborhoods with Low-Stress Routes
For me, a good bike ride is both relaxing and stimulating—a chance to revel in the passing scenery as I feel the wind blow across my face. But I never expected to experience this in New York City. Navigating Brooklyn and a bit of Manhattan on two wheels for the first time was a sublime surprise...
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Monday, March 27, 2017
A More Equitable Economy Exists Right Next Door
Business owners gather at an elegant Montreal event center to celebrate the 20 th anniversary of a large-scale economic partnership. The former chief of Quebec’s largest bank is the guest of honor. Sidewalks bustle with people walking in and out of homes, offices, bank, pharmacy, workout studio and...
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Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Tapping the Power of Place to Keep Us All Healthy
One number stands above all others as the best indicator of good health. It’s not your blood pressure, cholesterol level, average daily calories or even the age at which your grandparents die. It’s your zip code. This fact has sent shockwaves across the county. The chief aspiration of American...
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Saturday, October 01, 2016
How to Make City Streets More Friendly
Laughter, lively music and lip-smacking appreciation of food from many cultures animates St. Anthony Avenue in St. Paul, Minnesota as a crowd whoops it up at the Better Bridges Bash. Even chilly temperatures and gusty winds can’t dampen folks’ enthusiasm—nor does the unpromising location right next...
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Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Healthy Snack Invented on Indian Reservation Now Faces Stiff Corporate Competition
The Pine Ridge Indian reservation is not the first place you’d look for good news about creating a new kind of economy that works for everyone. This corner of South Dakota includes several of the poorest counties in America, according to census figures. Ninety-seven percent of Pine Ridge’s Lakota...
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Wednesday, March 30, 2016
America’s "Worst Walking City" Gets Back on its Feet
The US gave up on walking in the mid-20th Century—at least planners and politicians did. People on foot were virtually banished from newly constructed neighborhoods. Experts assured us that cars and buses (and eventually helicopters and jet packs) would efficiently take us everywhere we wanted to...
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Saturday, February 13, 2016
The City As a Commons: From Flint to Italy
The disaster with Flint, Michigan’s drinking water, created by political leaders more devoted to fiscal austerity than the common good, illuminates why it’s important to think of our cities as commons–human creations that belong to all residents, not just the wealthy and politically well-connected...
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Thursday, January 07, 2016
MDs Now Prescribe Walking to Boost Your Health
Everyone knows walking is good for you. It’s plain common sense, backed by a wealth of recent medical research . In fact, a major new study found that lack of physical activity is twice as deadly for us as obesity. Health data shows that as little as 30 minutes of walking a day cuts the incidence...
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Tuesday, December 08, 2015
Benefits of Walking Are So Huge, Let’s Make Sure Everyone Can Do It
Mounting evidence that a daily walk helps prevent a host of serious diseases is beginning to influence debates about health care, community vitality, poverty, race and opportunity. “The health benefits of walking are so overwhelming that to deny access to that is a violation of fundamental human...
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Friday, October 23, 2015
A Good Place for Everyone to Walk
People have walked for justice and economic opportunity throughout American history. Workers wanting a better life for their families walked on picket lines and at protests, rallied by advocates like Cesar Chavez. People demanding civil rights marched in Selma, Alabama and Washington, DC led by Rev...
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