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Quote of the Day

It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy: We assume families don’t want to live downtown, we therefore don’t design for family, and, sure enough, families don’t come, or they don’t stay.

Brent Toderian, Vox

Category Archives: Urban Issues

June 8, 2017
Clearing The Air On Urban Las Vegas
New Geography

Here’s a Corner Side Yard take on the Sin City — part urbanist, part sociologist, part economist, all observational — that details my thoughts on a truly unique place.

India’s Potential Opportunity for Transit-Oriented Development
The City Fix

After eight years of deliberation to streamline such irregularities, India’s landmark Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act (RERA), which was notified by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation in 2016, became fully operational on May 1, 2017.

Buffalo’s $1 Billion Reinvestment Plan
ICIC

The initiative, known as the Buffalo Billion, is New York State’s commitment to invest $1 billion in the Buffalo area’s economy. The initiative uses a combination of state grants and tax breaks to spur economic growth.

Manufacturing Tax Credit Results In Fewer Jobs
Urban Milwaukee

The so-called manufacturing tax credit was touted as a tool to create jobs but actually pays out when jobs are cut. Nothing in the credit required job creation. Worse, investors can still qualify for the credit even when jobs are eliminated.

June 7, 2017
U.S. Sues L.A. Over Inadequate Housing for Disabled
U.S. News & World Report

The United States has joined a lawsuit accusing Los Angeles of failing to develop affordable housing for disabled people, despite accepting millions of dollars of federal funds for that purpose, the Department of Justice said on Wednesday.

Why Don’t Angelenos Like The Valley?
L.A. Weekly

There’s the Valley that people want to exist, a sprawl of former orange groves that begat suburbs — very white, very middle-class suburbs — that in turn released an army of mall rats whose images remain frozen like paused frames from ’80s teen flicks.

Cleveland Mapping Charts Impact of Blight
Next City

From their impact on nearby property values to costs associated with crime and arson, vacant homes in poor condition are surprisingly expensive. But beyond their monetary cost blighted properties are also associated with a number of public health concerns.

Property Taxes: How Houston Compares
The Urban Edge

According to a national analysis by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Houston has the lowest effective property tax rate — the tax bill as a percent of a property’s market value — among Texas cities.

Global Cities in the New Age of Populism
The Hill

Over the past year, leading cities — particularly in Europe and the United States — have had to confront an unexpected new reality: the rise of populist and nationalist movements that often find disdain with the basic values of urbanism itself.

June 6, 2017
Is Joel Kotkin Overhyping The Heartland?
Houston Chronicle

Joel Kotkin is out with a manifesto on the New Heartland, capital H: The belt of states running north from Minnesota and Ohio south to Texas and Florida. Everything, that is, besides the West, the Northeast, and the Mid-Atlantic.

Should The U.K. Nationalize Data?
Information Age

National, local and city governments have surrendered the initiative on smart city projects by letting commercial companies hoover up data.

Can Cities Hack Diversity?
CityLab

Pittsburgh has declared itself an “inclusive innovation city,” meaning it is committed to making sure that white people aren’t the only beneficiaries of the tech-based economy it’s trying to cultivate. Here’s how that’s working out.

Implications of the IoT Connectivity Binge
Pew Research Center

Despite wide concern about cyberattacks, outages and privacy violations, most experts believe the Internet of Things will continue to expand successfully the next few years, tying machines to machines and linking people to valuable resources, services and opportunities.

Why Smart Technology Won’t Solve All Urban Problems
boingboing

In a long excerpt in The Guardian, we get a flavor of Adam Greenfield’s nuanced, incisive critique of technology that is deployed to manipulate the people who use it, treating us as things to be sensed, not sensors.

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