Folks in the urban planning and development worlds are cheered that Barack Obama says he's creating an Office of Urban Policy.
It's about time some president did this. It makes plenty of sense, and it shouldn't have taken a Democrat from a big city to have recognized it. The problems and issues exist and the government has to deal with them regardless of who's in the White House.
And perhaps the incoming North Carolina governor, Bev Perdue, should take the notion and set up something at the state level. North Carolina's cities share some uniquely urban problems, but few people at state level are focusing on them.
For the White House job, I haven't heard many names mentioned.
But for Transportation secretary, one name I've heard while gossiping with several people is Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Portland, Ore., (at left, and note bicycle lapel pin an early and ardent supporter of Smart Growth. But take that just as gossip. I have no pipeline to the Obama transition office.