The Ancient Maya Cosmology of Conservation

In Their Worldview, Humans Were Not Superior to Nature. They Were But One Element Needed to Maintain Universal Balance.

In the middle of the jungle in central Belize excavating an ancient Maya water temple, I’m at the edge of a sacred pool, praying to Chahk, the Maya rain god, for it not to rain. At least not until my team of archaeologists finishes excavating a ceremonial platform.

Maya farmers in the area, who rely on rainfall to nourish crops, offer up different prayers. For over 4,000 years, Maya families, commoner and wealthy, have relied on water from the skies. Without rain, crops are decimated, river trade ceases, and drinking supplies …

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If You Can’t Beat the Bay Area, Join It

Solving Northern California's Toughest Problems Requires a New Megaregion, from San Francisco and Tahoe to the San Joaquin and Salinas Valleys

Welcome to the Bay Area, Merced!

Further north, welcome as well to Modesto, Sacramento, Placerville, and Yuba City. And, to the south, you’re invited, too, Santa Cruz, Monterey, San Benito, and …

My Plan for Building the Perfect California City

Welcome to 'Joeville,' Where the First Rule Is Not to Play by the Rules

Recently a startup founder in San Jose asked me a question: What would you do if you were starting a California city?

My first answer: Get my head examined.

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California’s Fear of High-Rise Living Is Blocking Our View of the Future

Tall Residential Housing Would Spur Retail, Ease Homelessness, and Curb Pollution and Traffic

Want to spook your neighbors this Halloween? Don’t bother with big displays of goblins, ghouls, or ghosts. Instead, just decorate your door with a picture of an eight-story apartment building.

Californians …

Why Building More Freeways Makes Traffic Worse, Not Better

To Ease L.A. Gridlock, We Need Improved Mass Transit and Smart Urban Planning

In 1865, British economist William Stanley Jevons wrote an influential essay entitled “The Coal Question.” Today his insights are interesting to me not as they relate to coal, but rather …