Coronavirus and Urbanism

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New York City Coronavirus

The Once-in-a-Generation Opportunity to Remake Downtown

Urban cores around the country were transforming into live, work, and play destinations before the pandemic. The pandemic was a setback for this transformation, but it could also be a rare opportunity. It’s up to city leadership to seize it.

January 23, 2023 - The Washington Post

Coronavirus Social Distancing

Friday Eye Candy: Covid-19, Then and Now

The New York Times compared images from readers portraying similar scenes in 2020 and 2022.

January 6, 2023 - The New York Times

Vacant boarded-up storefronts along Powell Street in San Francisco, California.

Planning Year in Review 2022: Downtowns, Transportation, Climate Change

Part two of a review of the major themes, debates, and events of the year in planning that was 2022.

December 19, 2022 - James Brasuell

Empty New York City street during the COVID-19 pandemic with #NYSTRONG billboard in foreground.

From ‘Urban Exodus’ to ‘Urban Doom Loop’

The initial shocks of the Covid 19 pandemic have become more persistent, and it’s time to start wondering what comes next for the communities on either side of the changes.

December 4, 2022 - The New York Times

Books

The Top Urban Planning Books of 2022

An annual list of the must-read books related to urban planning and its intersecting fields.

November 28, 2022 - James Brasuell

The former parking of Woodies restaurant is filled with empty picnic tables for dining during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Outdoor Dining Parklets No Longer Cheap and Easy

Cities in Santa Cruz County, California are making outdoor dining laws permanent, and some businesses are getting sticker shock at the extra cost of maintaining the pandemic-era expansion of al fresco dining.

November 21, 2022 - Lookout Santa Cruz

California Shelter-in-Place

Office Vacancies Could Cost San Francisco $200 Million by 2028

The fiscal toll of the pandemic is only beginning to reveal itself. The challenges presented to growing office vacancy rates are not unique to San Francisco.

November 20, 2022 - Bloomberg

The sign for a WeWork office appears at the exterior of a brick high-rise in a dense downtown.

Seeking a Post-Pandemic Comeback, WeWork to Close More Offices

WeWork isn’t dead yet, hoping to ride post-pandemic interest in flexible workspace to a comeback story for the ages. There are still cuts to be made, however.

November 14, 2022 - CoStar News

Aerial view of high-rise buildings on waterfront in Boston, Massachusetts

Why Cities Will Outlast the Pandemic Slump

A new report suggests that despite recent challenges, the ‘value proposition’ of urban activity centers remains as strong as ever.

November 1, 2022 - Bloomberg CityLab

New York City Open Streets

Open Streets and Outdoor Dining Are Best for Business, Report Says

Most business owners believe that they'd be out of business without on-street parking near their front door. The experience of New York City during the pandemic proves otherwise.

October 27, 2022 - StreetsBlog NYC

Italian restaurant outdoor dining patio with string lights in New York City

Who Should Manage New York’s Outdoor Dining Program?

A proposal to shift responsibility away from the Department of Transportation has met staunch resistance from industry groups and advocates of the program.

October 24, 2022 - StreetsBlog NYC

The sculpture of the "Double Check Businessman" in Liberty Park, New York City

Checking the 'Back-to-Work Barometer'

The back-to-work data everyone is talking about? It comes from a security company that offers swipe badges for entrance into office buildings all over the country. Some experts say their data is too incomplete to be authoritative, however.

October 23, 2022 - Bloomberg

Outdoor Dining

Revamped Curb Management Strategies Among Pandemic Changes Likely to Stick in Cities

With so many more people working from home, ordering delivery, and moving around the public realm in new ways, advanced curb management strategies are among the pandemic-era innovations likely to stick long into the future.

September 21, 2022 - David Thom

Telecommute

D.C., San Francisco Lead Pandemic Work From Home Trend

Remote work increased threefold during the pandemic, but the numbers vary significantly from city to city and region to region. Almost half of D.C.-area employees, for example, worked from home in 2021, according to American Community Survey data.

September 20, 2022 - The Washington Post

People boarding bus at LA Metro Bus Stop, Alvarado Street, Los Angeles

A Transit Ridership Role Reversal in California

Since the outset of the pandemic, the capital of car-oriented sprawl in California has become the king of public transit. Looking for lessons about the future of public transit in the United States? Look to San Francisco and Los Angeles.

September 14, 2022 - The Mercury News

Wyoming

Measuring the Urban Exodus

New data reveals truths about one of the biggest questions to emerge from the pandemic: Did the public health risks and economic disruptions of 2020 and 2021 spur an urban exodus away from the urban cores of large metropolitan areas?

September 11, 2022 - Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University

Las Vegas Sprawl

Analysis: Pandemic Pressed Fast Forward on U.S. Migration Trends

In Las Vegas, Denver, Philadelphia, and more, out of town newcomers have been driving up real estate prices by moving in from more expensive locations with the resources to outspend locals, according to analysis by the Business Journals.

September 4, 2022 - The Business Journals

New York City Winter

New York MTA Cuts Bus Service

The transit crisis continues.

September 4, 2022 - New York Daily News

Busy restaurant seating on New York City sidewalk during COVID-19 pandemic

Americans Have Fallen in Love With Outdoor Dining

Started as a response to pandemic restrictions, al fresco dining has taken off as customers, restaurant owners, and city officials realize the social and economic benefits of outdoor dining spaces.

August 29, 2022 - Boston Globe

Urban Living

D.C. Could Lead the Downtown Office Conversion Trend

Many urban cores around the country are faced with increasing office vacancies concurrently with a housing affordability crisis caused, at least in part, by a lack of supply. D.C. is particularly primed for a wave of adaptive reuse.

August 25, 2022 - Archinect

Top Books

An annual review of books related to planning.

Top Websites

The best of the Internet—since 2002.

Top Apps

Planning apps for a brave new world.

Top Schools

The definitive ranking of graduate planning programs.

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.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.