Economic Development

Blog post
July 16, 2009, 10am PDT
I previously lamented the apparent death of industrial use in our cities by the widespread application of terms like “post-industrial” and “rust-belt.”  While semantics is an issue, let’s not forget that design matters and, in terms of industrial use, it hasn’t seemed to matter enough in recent years.    

In times past, industrial use was often a form of pride.  Many of the hulking, multi-story industrial buildings in older cities are (still) beautiful additions to our cityscapes.  In some cities, those that went vacant have spawned a new form of urban scavenge hunting by those seeking to fuel their appreciation for our industrial past through photography and exploration.  Think as well of the WPA posters, many of which used stylized industrial themes to promote our “American” identity. 

Scott Page
June 28, 2009, 11am PDT
Already a national leader in green building and looking to expand its leadership, the Los Angeles Community College District is launching several collaborative efforts to train a new, green workforce.
The Planning Report
Blog post
June 3, 2009, 1pm PDT

Automobile industry subsidies are an inefficient way to support economic development. Even worse, policies intended to support automobile manufacturers and recover loans can be economically harmful. 

Todd Litman
Blog post
April 24, 2009, 8pm PDT

I never put much thought into the term “post-industrial.”  In my college and grad years, the phrase seemed to be used like candy – a ubiquitous summary of the current state of cities in the US.  The phrase implies a kind of death in our cities, an inability to retain the industries that spurred their very growth. 

Scott Page
March 28, 2009, 9am PDT
Though typically centered in bigger cities, this piece from Business Week looks at the best small cities to locate startup businesses in every state.
BusinessWeek
Blog post
March 10, 2009, 12pm PDT

Is a $50,000 annual income wealth or poverty in North America? By historical or international standards such an income should be considered wealthy and luxurious, but most people I know consider it poverty because of the high cost of living.

Todd Litman
March 7, 2009, 9am PST
At a recent event in Los Angeles, Cecilia Estolano, CEO of the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles, presented her vision for the Downtown of the future in one of the country's most notoriously diffuse urban centers.
The Planning Report
Blog post
February 3, 2009, 4pm PST

We have just published a new report, "Smart Transportation Economic Stimulation: Infrastructure Investments That Support Strategic Planning Objectives Provide True Economic Development" which discusses factors to consider when evaluating transportation economic stimulation strategies.

Todd Litman
January 9, 2009, 12pm PST
A new GIS-based service promises to improve on real estate agents by using GIS data to locate promising sites to locate for business.
BusinessWeek
December 26, 2008, 7am PST
Commissioner of Economic Development Brian Reilly makes the case to overhaul the city's 1951 zoning ordinance to a form-based SmartCode.
Buffalo News
December 24, 2008, 11am PST
City leaders in Galveston looking for ways to recover from Hurricane Ike turn to an old staple of the local economy: gambling.
Houston Chronicle
October 23, 2008, 10am PDT
London, Ontario has been focused on retaining and embracing its creative class. The city remains optimistic that it's on the right track toward becoming a creative city--which has been good news for its economy.
The Londoner
October 18, 2008, 11am PDT
Texas cities top a ranking by Forbes of where your dollar goes the farthest. Affordable housing and promising job prospects made a big difference.
Forbes
September 18, 2008, 1pm PDT
Scraper bikes, tricked-out bicycles adopted from scraper cars (with wheels so big they scrape the inside of the wheel well), have become increasingly popular among carless teens in Oakland, CA.
National Public Radio
Blog post
September 16, 2008, 7am PDT

Starbucks stores have seen a lot of protests. Due to its international brand recognition, the chain became an easy mark for activists looking to draw media attention to concerns from genetic engineering to union busting, from store placements in historically sensitive locations to the company’s opposition to Ethiopia’s application to trademark three types of coffee.

Jess Zimbabwe
Blog post
September 10, 2008, 11am PDT

Deindustrialization has wreaked havoc across many American cities and towns. One only need visit the landscape of the rust belt, places like Buffalo, Detroit or Flint, Michigan to get a sense how damaging this transformation can be. Behind the ugly ruins of abandoned factories and shuttered stores are the lives of real people who have suffered. Manufacturing provided jobs, good paying ones at that, that helped create a blue collar middle class.

 

Lance Freeman
August 13, 2008, 2pm PDT
Urban experts weigh in on the future of the suburbs.
Freakonomics (Opinion) on The New York Times
August 5, 2008, 5am PDT
<p>The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, the MPO for the Philadelphia metropolitan region, has introduced an innovate way of making people aware of the benefits of older, established suburbs: market them.</p>
The Philadelphia Inquirer
June 19, 2008, 1pm PDT
<p>Bay Area tech companies are increasingly opening offices in downtown San Francisco, a significant change from the development pattern of the last ten years.</p>
BusinessWeek
June 13, 2008, 9am PDT
<p>It's ethics vs. economics in a debate over a proposed casino in Stranraer, Scotland.</p>
BBC News