Style Splash Header

Q&A with Consulting City Planner Brent Toderian

After six years as Vancouver’s chief city planner, Brent Toderian [pronounced todder-an] launched his own international consulting firm, Toderian UrbanWorks, in 2012 to advise cities around the world on issues ranging from transportation to urban design. Earlier this year, he added the River City to his list of civic clients when he was tapped to consult the Downtown Sacramento Partnership after serving as keynote speaker at the organization’s annual State of Downtown event in February. We catch up with Toderian to discuss his thoughts on bringing more housing to downtown Sacramento, creating a more pedestrian-friendly and bike-forward environment, and making the central city a more desirable place to live, work and play.

Where the Sidewalk Blooms

In an innovative effort to green up and cool down our concrete jungle, the Seed Pile Project empowers citizen botanists to color outside the lines (and inside sidewalk cracks) throughout our region. With a goal of expanding statewide and beyond, the nascent urban environmental movement hopes to spread like wildflowers.

The Passive House: Minimum Energy, Maximum Comfort

As our climate changes, leading to colder winters and hotter summers—along with more intense wildfire smoke infiltrating the valley—one Sacramento builder is bringing a new type of structure to town. It’s called a “passive house,” an airtight abode that even our region’s dreaded pollen can’t work its way into. And despite its seemingly laissez-faire moniker, the concept is a proactive step toward the future of sustainable home design.

Can Electric Bikes Help Save The Planet?

Pre-pandemic, electric Jump bike rentals in Sacramento trailed only Paris in popularity. Today, electric bike ownership is soaring. From commuters to joyriders to grandmothers, e-bikes are turning even non-cyclists into e-vangelists and creating a greener, less fossil-fuel-filled world. Now we just need more of our region’s leaders to make it easier and safer for all of us to plug and play.


In an industry where women rarely take center stage, Julie Young has quietly become one of the most significant and thoughtful urban developers in the region—crafting exquisitely curated projects that bloom like defiant wildflowers in the concrete jungle. And now, through sheer tenacity and savvy scrappiness, she may just have unlocked the mystery to attainable housing that aspires to forward-thinking design as much as affordability. It’s a beautiful day in her neighborhood, indeed.

Chow Bella

Willow serves up love, Southern Italian style, with a side of colorful and texture-rich decor. After three tough pandemic-impacted years, the downtown restaurant scene is looking up.

Walking on Air

The Idea Public art is critical to the vibrancy of any city, but two German artists, Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth, have taken the idea of public art to new heights. In 2011, the duo created their first example of…

Get a Room!

  GGiven the quarantine requirements and economic downturn of the last two years, the global pandemic seems like the oddest era for local hotel development to build momentum, but nevertheless, Sacramento currently finds itself amidst a thunderous hotel boom. Just…

Sitting Down with a Good Book

The Idea In 2014, the United Kingdom’s National Literacy Trust partnered with the British-based arts group called Wild in Art to raise awareness and funding for literacy programs in underprivileged communities. The concept: Fabricate and paint 50 public benches that…

Double Vision

Following their Sacramento-centric HGTV home design series, Mash-Up Your Home, Colossus Mfg is also rebranding Broadway’s Tower District.

On Sale Now!

Sactown Sept Oct 2023 Cover

Stay in the know!

Get Sactown's top stories in your inbox by signing up for our weekly newsletter.

Bites Slug