July 6, 2016, 9am PDT
It's no secret that urban centers are doing better today than they were 30 years ago. New FHFA data on housing prices confirms the trend and suggests that a changing environment (as opposed to changing preferences) account for it.
July 5, 2016, 2pm PDT
Blogger and transit consultant Jarrett Walker paints a picture of Portland's Line 75, a workaday bus serving urban neighborhoods outside downtown. His reflections on radial and orbital journeys are worth a read.
February 10, 2016, 9am PST
Fairly or unfairly, Des Moines has a solid reputation as one of the nation's least interesting cities. But unbeknownst to the rest of us, this quiet working town might become the Midwest's answer to Austin, Texas.
February 4, 2016, 6am PST
The Terraces, a mixed-use project in Charlottesville, Virginia, adopts a design that reflects its historic downtown surroundings. Oliver Kuttner, the developer, says that "breaking up" large buildings can make them more palatable on street level.
November 11, 2015, 1pm PST
The big, contentious question of contemporary downtowns is under consideration in Dallas: Is there too much parking or not enough parking?
October 29, 2015, 1pm PDT
The Vancouver City Council took a major step forward this week with an idea that it's been mulling for years: to tear down the Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts located in the city's downtown.
October 16, 2015, 5am PDT
If jobs, services, and other urban amenities are concentrated downtown, suburbanites can use transit to get there quickly without a car. Job sprawl makes transit useless outside central districts.
October 13, 2015, 10am PDT
Local officials, planners, and other civic leaders have joined together to look at how the city can bring neighborhoods split by freeways back together again.
September 13, 2015, 5am PDT
The Quicken Loans founder and real estate mogul now controls 78 downtown properties. His investment choices can set the tone for life in what used to be an abandoned city center.
July 30, 2015, 8am PDT
Central districts have been surging back since the 1980s. But in most cities, the upper third of earners still favor outlying areas and are underrepresented closer to downtown.
City Observatory City Commentary
June 29, 2015, 6am PDT
While they're currently in vogue, streetcars are only worthwhile if they can be a viable option for local residents. Unfortunately, this is rarely how the systems are designed.
June 19, 2015, 5am PDT
The Core Values: Why American Companies are Moving Downtown report, released on June 18, 2015, provides in-depth analysis of a powerful trend of companies investing in urban downtowns.
June 11, 2015, 8am PDT
Opponents of the capital investment plan rejected the plan on the basis that it focused too much on the downtown area.
June 2, 2015, 10am PDT
Improvements funded by the developer of the 73-story Wilshire Grand project will make Downtown Los Angeles' main thoroughfare a better place to walk, bike, and use public transit.
April 14, 2015, 8am PDT
What helps make a downtown family friendly? Safe places to play, safe streets, good schools and attainable housing, writes Jennifer Hill.
November 3, 2014, 2pm PST
"Mini D.C.s" provide the successful examples of revitalized, walkable urban places, according to a recent trend piece in the Washington Post.
October 9, 2014, 5am PDT
Architecture critic Aaron Betsky provides a new take urban dystopia: bland and homogenous. The antidote, he argues, can be found on the edges.
July 7, 2014, 11am PDT
The city of Clearwater in Tampa Bay has a "sleepy" downtown, much of which is owned by the Church of Scientology. Can investments by the city revive its downtown, as it did with $30 million worth of investments in Clearwater Beach?
May 30, 2014, 11am PDT
With a $1 billion NFL stadium on the way, and a $400 million mixed-use development that recently broke ground next door to the new home of the Vikings, stakeholders have high hopes for Minneapolis' downtown.
May 7, 2014, 11am PDT
After past attempts to redevelop the downtown of Michigan's third largest city failed, Warren's mayor believes that the city's downtown and civic center is ready to transform into a bustling urban environment. What will it take to make that happen?