June 9, 2016, 2pm PDT
The exact moment when new digital and Internet technologies fundamentally changed the practice of planning is debatable, but that the profession has been irrevocably altered is not debatable.
April 5, 2016, 5am PDT
Amid the ubiquitous, and inconsistent, reportage on rising rents and housing prices, a guide from City Observatory helps point readers toward the most accurate numbers.
March 18, 2016, 6am PDT
The 2015 Inrix Traffic Scorecard provides less useful information about traffic problems than previous editions, as discussed in this City Observatory Commentary.
March 6, 2016, 9am PST
Metro, the transit agency for Los Angeles County, could be the first to peak under the hood at trip data generated by Lyft.
February 24, 2016, 8am PST
A mapping project lead by Facebook's Connectivity Lab is gathering data from all over the atmosphere, and beyond, to make a comprehensive map of the world's buildings.
January 22, 2016, 11am PST
These days, Big Data is the topic at hand, but Arup's Vincent Lee says data analysis can only go so far. He uses his work on the New York Rising Community Reconstruction Program to illustrate why a "human element" is crucial to finding solutions.
December 1, 2015, 1pm PST
It is now next to impossible to reside anonymously in a modern city. Why? Because data anonymization itself is almost impossible without using advanced cryptography. Our every transaction leaves a digital marker that can be mined by anyone...
October 25, 2015, 5am PDT
With so many potential sources of data with which to analyze traffic behaviors and real-time conditions, University of Toronto engineers have created an online portal that could one day help drive a system populated with autonomous cars.
October 14, 2015, 6am PDT
One of the world's most popular navigation apps, Waze, has aggregated the data generated by 50 million users to develop a "Driver's Satisfaction Index." Perhaps surprisingly, auto-oriented Phoenix, Arizona leads all cities on the index.
October 9, 2015, 9am PDT
The workout-tracking app Strava provided generous access to its data to allow a compare and contrast exercise in how people ride bikes in 12 of the most famous cities in the world.
September 3, 2015, 6am PDT
The potential of "Smart Cities" is still very much under negotiation. Data-Smart City Solutions at Harvard University surveyed what cities are doing so far to take advantage of the Internet of things.
Data-Smart City Solutions
July 20, 2015, 2pm PDT
Planners will be presented with new challenges and opportunities in a new era of data-enhanced government.
July 16, 2015, 2pm PDT
As city planners we are increasingly recording, measuring, and organizing city data—a practice known as urban science. Learn about resources across the globe helping to better understand our cities.
June 25, 2015, 5am PDT
Earlier in June, Google announced the creation of an "urban innovation company" called Sidewalk Labs. One writer explains the genesis of the company as well as its potential for the future of how cities operate.
June 22, 2015, 2pm PDT
An article in Boom: A Journal of California extends the timeline of "smart cities" and "big data" efforts by a considerable amount—all the way back to the late 1960s.
BOOM: A Journal of California
June 3, 2015, 6am PDT
Amid growing skepticism, an international gathering examines the useful benefits for an age of critical urban challenges.
May 10, 2015, 11am PDT
This is what "smart cities" technology looks like: A new product called Inrix Insights offers planners and businesses a platform by which to access the data created by the use of connected cars.
April 3, 2015, 2pm PDT
Many smartphone users have a fitness app that they use to track their routes and progress on fitness goals. The data in these apps is a gold mine for planners, helping lead to better infrastructure investments.
March 9, 2015, 2pm PDT
Welcome to the age of "Dashboard Governance"—when a good user interface offers the potential for performance advantages to city management.
February 6, 2015, 2pm PST
Researchers from Weill Cornell Medical College have spent the last 18 months scouring the New York Subway in the search for a DNA profile of the system. They even created a map of the 15,152 microbes they found.