In the News

Maybe Urban Schools Aren't So Bad

It is conventional wisdom that big cities have problems retaining the middle class because of poor schools.  But many older cities labor under a disadvantage that their suburbs don't have- lots of students from underprivileged background. ... read more »

Pope Francis' Laudato Si and New Urbanism

In case you all haven't read it already, Pope Francis' Laudato Si released this week talks very directly on many New Urbanist themes, taken almost directly from the Charter. If anyone is interested in getting together and talking about this document in more detail, please let me know. ... read more »

The Economist: Bad urban planning is the cause of all our problems

Not literally, of course, but not far off: http://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21647622-land-centre-pre-industri... [mirror] http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpost.php?p=122964975&postcount=7 Basically, The Economist says that a lot of the global problems of the past 5-10 years (inequali... read more »

Conservative cities? Yes, in the UK

In the United States, central cities lean towards left-wing parties (even in affluent areas like the Upper West Side of New York) while suburbs and exurbs lean right.  But as we learned this week in the United Kingdom, this is not true everywhere.  London's urban core is the Cities of Lond... read more »

The Geography of NYC's Children: More Evidence of Urban Popularity

Conventional wisdom is that making urban cores stronger and more pedestrian-friendly is irrelevant to the interests of American parents, who supposedly want to live in suburbs or faux-suburbs at the edge of cities. ... read more »

Riot Recap: Or, Even The Bad News Is Not So Bad

After the recent Baltimore riots, I saw numerous articles using them as proof that American cities really aren't on the mend after all, because there are still plenty of poverty-stricken, crime-ridden, riot-prone neighborhoods: all of which, of course, is certainly true. But when you compare recent ... read more »

Too Much Open Space An Interesting Paper

Prof. Robert Ellickson of Yale Law School has an interesting paper up on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN) website.  He critciizes widespread popular support for open space, pointing out that too much open space reduces population density and thus accelerates sprawl and reduces housing... read more »

Downtowns are Booming (Sometimes)

The University of Virginia just created a set of tables based on recent Census data.  These tables measure the affluence, age, etc. ... read more »

Rich Foreigners Like Suburbs, Too

One common argument against new construction (especially high-rise construction) in cities is that rich foreigners will soak up any new housing supply.  This argument is of course based on the assumption that urban high-rises, and only urban high-rises, are irresistible to rich foreigners. ... read more »