Category: SGA News Clips

Smart Growth News — December 17, 2014

Boomers Seen Boosting New-Home Sales as Millennials Wait
Bloomberg — December 17, 2014
With new-home sales running well below historic levels, older Americans who have had decades to build wealth and credit histories are helping to prop up demand while younger people put off homeownership.
 
Five signs America is falling in love with public transit
CNN — December 17, 2014
You could call it a budding romance with the possibility of a strong, long-lasting relationship. More Americans are riding public transportation. Upwardly trending statistics show it’s not just a meaningless crush.
 
These Cities Might Be Seeing More Power Outages, Thanks To Climate Change
The Huffington Post — December 16, 2014
How likely is it that climate change will leave your city in the dark? Researchers at Johns Hopkins University asked just this question, analyzing which cities will be more likely to suffer from hurricane-related power outages in the future.
 
Opinion: The truth about smart cities
The Guardian (UK) — December 17, 2014
Utopian, urban visions help drive the “smart city” rhetoric that has, for the past decade or so, been promulgated most energetically by big technology, engineering and consulting companies. The movement is predicated on ubiquitous wireless broadband and the embedding of computerised sensors into the urban fabric.

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Smart Growth News — December 16, 2014

Small cities solving big problems
USA Today — December 15, 2014
When it comes to municipal innovation, the Big Apple, the City of Angels and the Windy City seem to get all the glory, along with the memorable nicknames. But look a little closer at smaller municipalities — where the majority of Americans live — and you might be surprised at how many of them are trying some crazy project or another.

Bloomberg’s Giving 14 Cities Up To $3 Million Each To End Poverty, Spur Job Growth
The Huffington Post — December 15, 2014
Fourteen cities ranging from Long Beach, California, to Jerusalem are getting up to $3 million from former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s foundation to create “innovation teams” to jump-start new approaches to poverty, public safety, job growth and other issues, the foundation announced Monday.

Mayors on the Record (Video)
Politico Magazine — December 15, 2014
As part of Politico Magazine’s What Works series, we convened 13 mayors from American cities big and small to talk about the country’s most pressing urban issues—from poverty to sprawl, education to crime. Here’s what they had to say:
How to Rebuild Architecture
The New York Times — December 15, 2014
We’ve confronted this problem before, with the backlash against what was seen as soulless modernism in the 1960s and ’70s. But our response, broadly speaking, was more of the same, dressed differently: postmodernism, deconstructivism and a dozen other -isms that made for vibrant debate among the professionals but pushed everyone else further away.

Architects Aim to Make Us Healthier with “Irresistible Staircases” and Open Layouts
Scientific American — December 15, 2014
Americans, on average, spend around 90 percent of their time indoors, and now the nation’s leading group of architects has found inspiration in this somewhat glum fact. The professionals who design our working and living quarters are starting to see all these confined hours as a major opportunity for them to make a meaningful impact on public health.

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Smart Growth News — December 15, 2014

Cities drive innovation
CNN — December 15, 2014
Albert Einstein once said that if he was given an hour to solve a problem, he’d spend the first 55 minutes thinking about it and five minutes coming up with solutions. But in government, there is a tendency to reach immediately for the first available solution, without spending any time thinking about different ways to approach the problem.
 
For Millennials, Home Might Be a Moving Target
The New York Times — December 11, 2014
In metros with higher millennial shares, homeownership tends to be less affordable for this group. For instance, in Austin, Honolulu, New York, and San Diego, 20-34-year-olds account for at least 23.5 percent of the population, putting those metros in the top 10 for millennial share.
 
Stockholm’s Housing Shortage Threatens to Stifle Fast-Growing Start-Ups
The New York Times — December 14, 2014
Tyler Faux thought finding a place to live in New York City was tough. But when Mr. Faux, a 24-year-old New York native, moved here recently to work for one of the city’s fast-growing start-ups, he was in for a rude awakening.
 
Boehner, McConnell face big to-do list in next Congress
USA Today — December 14, 2014
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and incoming Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., are working in tandem to tee up Republican bills for quick action in the next Congress, getting legislative proposals lined up and ready to go.

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Smart Growth News — December 12, 2014

Walkability Is Good for You
Citylab — December 12, 2014
Ever since Jane Jacobs’ classic The Death and Life of Great American Cities, urbanists have extolled the ideal of the dense, mixed-used, walkable neighborhood, contrasting it with the dull and deadly cul-de-sacs of car-oriented suburbs.
 
2014′s Best and Worst Cities for an Active Lifestyle
WalletHub — December 11, 2014
A winter holiday celebration in the U.S. is never complete without a gorgefest. On Thanksgiving Day alone, the average person consumes more than 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat, according to the Calorie Control Council. And many of us justify overeating by crowning our list of New Year’s resolutions with a promise to “lose weight and get fit.”
 
UCS Analysis Finds U.S. Has Greatest Potential for Mitigation
Union of Concerned Scientists — December 11, 2014
Initial findings from a Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) report indicate that of the eight countries that make up 57 percent of all land use emissions, the United States has the greatest potential for emission reductions in this sector.
 
What funding method should lawmakers prioritize to meet transportation needs?
The New Orleans Times-Picayune — December 11, 2014
Lawmakers and other transportation advocates have held a series of meetings over the last few months to examine ways to better fund Louisiana’s infrastructure needs as the state faces a $12 billion backlog of projects.

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Smart Growth News — December 11, 2014

America’s Foreign-Born Population is Moving to the Suburbs
National Journal — December 11, 2014
America’s immigrant population is increasingly dispersed and more likely to live in suburban areas than just a decade ago. The changes are part of a long-term trend that experts predict could, when coupled with President Obama’s recent executive action, dramatically reshape communities around the United States.
 
Highway Funds Fall Low Enough That Republicans Seek Taxes
Bloomberg — December 10, 2014
Falling fuel prices, crumbling roads and bridges and a gridlocked Congress have U.S. states, even those run by Republicans, debating higher taxes.
 
Cities look to get smart with technology
U-T San Diego — December 10, 2014
In big cities of the future, commuters will get text messages telling them not only whether their train is on time but also suggesting that they walk two blocks and catch the express bus, which will get to their destination faster.
 
Spending Bill Increases Mass Transit Funding
Roll Call — December 10, 2014
The $1.1 trillion spending bill unveiled Tuesday night includes important transportation policy provisions. Here’s a brief summary.

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Smart Growth News — December 10, 2014

How The Suburbs Highlight The Divide Between America’s Haves And Have-Nots
Forbes — December 10, 2014
Even as many urban areas have experienced a marked resurgence, America’s farthest-flung suburbs have been facing deep and substantial challenges, as their rates of growth have slowed and their crime and poverty rates have risen. Alan Ehrenhaltdubbed this reversal of metropolitan fortunes “the great inversion.”
 
Secretary Jewell Announces New Tools to Help Communities Build Resilience to Climate Change
U.S. Department of the Interior — December 9, 2014
Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today announced the release of two new hubs of datasets that are part of the Climate Data Initiative (CDI), a key feature of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to help local and state leaders build greater community resilience in the face of climate change.
 
Fifty U.S. cities bond together to home-grow broadband
The Washington Post — December 9, 2014
There is a club of U.S. mayors fixated on improving the way broadband Internet works in their cities. And, while it’s new, it’s growing. Called Next Century Cities, the group added Medina County, Ohio, this week and now numbers 50 cities (and the occasional county).
 
Senate panel approves Obama highway safety pick
The Hill — December 9, 2014
President Obama’s nominee to lead the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTHSA) was approved by Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee on Tuesday.

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Smart Growth News — December 9, 2014

Want To Stop Your Brain From Getting Old? Live In A Walkable Neighborhood
Fast Co.Exist — December 8, 2014
At Kansas University, assistant professor of psychology Amber Watts is gearing up for a large study on how the walkability of neighborhoods impacts cognition—and maybe even dementia. An initial pilot study on 25 people she conducted with a fellow Alzheimer’s researcher and two architects found that the sample of older adults who lived in more “walkable” neighborhoods performed much better on cognition tests.
 
Heartland project could help Lincoln, other cities adapt to climate change
Lincoln Journal-Star (NE) — December 8, 2014
Climate change isn’t a myth for the public officials involved in the Heartland Climate Adaptation/Resilience Project. The project’s goal is to help communities identify and cope with its long-term effects. Based on scientific evidence, they believe climate change is a reality and they want their communities to be ready for water shortages, rising temperatures, increased flooding and other potential consequences.
 
Copenhagen Lighting the Way to Greener, More Efficient Cities
The New York Times — December 8, 2014
On a busy road in the center of town here, a string of green lights embedded in the bike path — the “Green Wave” — flashes on, helping cyclists avoid red traffic lights. On a main artery into the city, truck drivers can see on smartphones when the next light will change. And in a nearby suburb, new LED streetlights brighten only as vehicles approach, dimming once they pass.
 
Why Mixed-Use is Staple of New Construction
GlobeSt Real Estate — December 8, 2014
Mixed-use and transit-oriented developments are emerging as a staple of new construction across the Southeast, though they are still less visible to the capital markets. It’s rare to see a new office or condo building rise without ground floor retail or a hotel component.

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Smart Growth News — December 8, 2014

Cities and Markets Can Fight Climate Change
Bloomberg View — December 8, 2014
Representatives from every national government are meeting this week to work toward a global climate agreement, and the location of the conference — Lima, Peru — offers critically important lessons for negotiators.
 
Is Jan Gehl winning his battle to make our cities liveable?
The Guardian (UK) — December 8, 2014
Jan Gehl had just graduated as an architect; it was 1960 and he had been schooled in how to “do modern cities, with high-rises and a lot of lawns and good open space – good windy spaces”.
 
More People in Cities Today Live in Poverty Than in 1970
NextCity — December 5, 2014
In the past year, there have been countless headlines decrying the trend of coffee shops, craft breweries and loft apartments infiltrating inner-city neighborhoods. It would be easy to think that displacement is the new economic normal, but how many neighborhoods that used to have high rates of poverty have actually gentrified and how many people have actually been displaced by this new development?
 
The Tax That Dare Not Be Hiked
The Atlantic — December 7, 2014
In theory, advocates of an infusion of spending to fix the nation’s crumbling roads and bridges have found the perfect political moment. Fuel prices are plunging to their lowest level in years. The Highway Trust Fund is broke, and Congress faces a spring deadline to replenish it. The obvious answer—the only answer, according to many in Washington—is to raise the 18.4 cent-per-gallon gas tax, which hasn’t gone up in more than 20 years.

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