Cleveland Mayor Wants a 15-Minute City

The mayor of Cleveland expressed the goal to become the first “15-minute city” in America at his State of the City speech. Experts say it’s possible.

April 18, 2022, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Cleveland Public Square

Lucky-photographer / Shutterstock

As reported in an article by Sara Shookman, “Mayor Justin Bibb says Cleveland wants to be the first 15-minute city in North America, introducing the concept during his State of the City speech Wednesday.”

Matt Moss, a planner with Cleveland City Planning Commission, said “It's starting out with the city we have now, … and then asking residents how they might want their community to grow or change in ways that, again, make things accessible or provide them with more opportunities to access the things they want to get to in their day to day lives.”

City planners will develop a list of existing amenities and assess what different neighborhoods are lacking in terms of walkability. “In some neighborhoods, they find it's more quality that's lacking due to busted sidewalks or lack of bike lanes or bus stops. In others, when it comes to green space or food justice, neighborhoods are lacking altogether.”

Dr. Darcy Freedman, director of the Mary Ann Swetland Center for Environmental Health, highlighted the importance of access to healthy food and affordable basic staples. “Freedman's team is launching a new study in June called ‘Nourishing Neighborhoods, Empowering Community,’ examining how investing in people rather than just infrastructure can transform the food system.”

The “15-minute city” concept, first introduced in Europe, has become a shorthand for walkable, livable cities that put residents within easy reach of jobs, transit, commerce, and other daily needs. While proponents of the idea argue that it provides a useful vision for improving the day-to-day conditions of urban neighborhoods, the movement has received criticism for not taking into account specific historical conditions in American cities and the ways in which they exacerbate inequality and car-centric development. Economist Edward Glaeser has called it a “dead end.” To Glaeser, the 15-minute city describes a neighborhood, not a city. “All cities should be archipelagos of neighbourhoods, but these neighbourhoods must be connected.” In a recent example illustrating this contradiction, a “15-minute city” being built from scratch in Utah will nevertheless include around 40,000 parking spots.

Thursday, April 14, 2022 in WKYC

Indian Trail, North Carolina

Four ‘Low-Hanging Fruit’ Zoning Reforms

An excerpt from the latest book on zoning argues for four approaches to reform that can immediately improve land use regulation in the United States.

June 26, 2022 - M. Nolan Gray

Car Traffic

San Francisco Just Ended Single-Family Zoning

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted to Tuesday to eliminate single-family zoning, but pro-development advocates say additional changes are needed to unleash a wave of construction.

June 29, 2022 - San Francisco Chronicle

A Gold Line AnsaldoBreda P2550 train enters Mission Station in South Pasadena on February 25, 2012.

Land Banking to Prevent Transit-Oriented Displacement in Los Angeles

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) will implement a new land banking program to mitigate gentrification and displacement around future transit lines.

June 28, 2022 - Los Angeles Daily News

Chicago Transit Authority

Did Chicago’s Speed Cameras Improve Safety?

Advocates of automated enforcement argue it saves lives, but despite a dramatic rise in speeding tickets, pedestrian fatalities grew in 2021.

30 minutes ago - WBEZ

Washington DC Metro

Washington Metro Faces Budget Deficit, Safety Issues

The capital’s public transit system, the country’s third-largest, has been plagued by a series of problems ranging from a looming fiscal deficit to train crashes and track fires.

1 hour ago - Governing

View looking down on construction of multiple buildings in San Francisco's Transbay Transit Center District

San Francisco to Reconsider Inclusionary Zoning as Development Slows to a Crawl

Critics of inclusionary zoning frequently point to San Francisco as an example of what not to do. A sluggish year of development has some local politicians ready to reconsider the city’s program.

July 4 - San Francisco Chronicle

New Updates on The Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

International Real Estate Strategies and Deal Negotiation

Harvard Graduate School of Design Executive Education

Affordable Housing: Principles for Changing Domestic and Global Markets

Harvard Graduate School of Design Executive Education

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Hand Drawing Master Plans

This course aims to provide an introduction into Urban Design Sketching focused on how to hand draw master plans using a mix of colored markers.