January 12, 2015, 6am PST
A movement at the state and federal levels would take advantage of low oil prices to boost gas taxes to pay for infrastructure. Michigan, Iowa, and Utah proposals, and a change to the federal Corker-Murphy plan, are described below.
January 2, 2015, 5am PST
The tax would be a wholesale tax paid by fuel suppliers as has become more common in the last two years, not a retail tax at the gas pump. The Democratic governor's main problem may be his timing—the house flipped to Republican control.
December 22, 2014, 7am PST
The Michigan legislature compromised on a plan to raise money for state transportation funding. Instead of increasing the fuel tax, voters will consider an increased sales tax that exempts the fuel tax.
December 18, 2014, 2pm PST
Researchers at the Institute for Quality Communities at the University of Oklahoma prepared a set of images to show the indelible impact of mid-20th century urban renewal on Midwestern cities.
Institute for Quality Communities
December 17, 2014, 11am PST
Tiger Stadium was demolished in 2008 after a failed bid to preserve the historic ballpark. Recently, however, a new mixed use development, including a baseball diamond for youth sports programs, was approved to take its place.
December 12, 2014, 10am PST
While there may never be a good time to increase the federal gas tax, the same is not true when it comes to state gas taxes—perhaps because governors can't transfer billions of dollars from general funds to pay for roads. Lower gas prices helps.
December 9, 2014, 11am PST
In many places around the country, the price of water is increasing, quickly. While the reasons for the increase vary depending on the location, common to the issue is the ability of planning to either help or hinder the problem.
December 3, 2014, 1pm PST
Earlier this week a massive power outage struck Detroit. But that type of embarrassment might soon be a thing of the past because Detroit will soon undertake a $200 million upgrade of its electricity grid.
December 3, 2014, 12pm PST
The PlacePlans project—led by the Michigan Municipal League and the Michigan State University School of Planning, Design and Construction—recently released plans for placemaking efforts in eight Michigan communities.
November 19, 2014, 8am PST
A recent report collects data from the experience of cities using land banks as a method for addressing vacant and blighted properties.
November 18, 2014, 8am PST
The Republican-controlled Michigan State Senate voted November 13 to increase the state's 19-cents per gallon fuel tax by converting it to a wholesale fuel sales tax, resulting in an anticipated $1.2 billion annual revenue increase.
November 11, 2014, 2pm PST
Jason Segedy has published a long, brutally frank look at blight and vacant properties, especially at the underappreciated culprit for the woes of so many shrinking cities around the Rust Belt: household decline.
Notes from the Underground
November 8, 2014, 7am PST
Federal judge Steven Rhodes approved Detroit’s plan to shed $7 billion of the total $18 billion debt.
November 6, 2014, 8am PST
Anna Clark has the scoop about the latest wrinkle in the blockbuster Detroit blight auction: the surprise, mysterious bid for 6,000 parcels if off the table.
November 2, 2014, 11am PST
Rachel Dovey shares some of the secrets to the success of Grand Rapids, Michigan after a year of transit improvements in the small city.
October 27, 2014, 6am PDT
Making up only seven percent of U.S. interstate miles, the future of toll roads is bright according to Brooking's Robert Puentes and Diane Rehm's other guests in a 52-minute, wide ranging discussion on gas taxes, toll roads, and privatization.
October 24, 2014, 7am PDT
A Detroit reborn sounds great, but what if the residents of “blighted” areas don’t want to leave? Many feel they have no choice in a process that has been compared to racial relocation. Meanwhile, activists scramble to give residents options.
October 17, 2014, 10am PDT
Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert has an urbanist streak. And only people with his kind of money can singlehandedly buy out big chunks of downtown Detroit. But will his approach to neighborhood-making actually benefit the city as a whole?
October 9, 2014, 2pm PDT
Looking for the best examples of municipal websites? Look no further.
October 5, 2014, 5am PDT
Suzette Hackney, a former Detroit Free Press journalist, expresses her concern about who is getting left out of Detroit's comeback story.