The former Olympic athlete's village in Vancouver is in the news again, but this time no one is celebrating. The billion dollar plus development, originally built to house athletes then converted to a residential housing development, was primarily financed by a loan from the city of Vancouver. Millennium Development Corp., developer of the project, currently owes the city $731 million. Millennium was scheduled to pay back the first $200 million by August 31st, but came up $8 million short. read more »
American and European planners have long sought to improve the "jobs-housing" balance, seeking to place residents and jobs within walking or cycling distance. Of course, planners don't place people anywhere. Not surprisingly, their efforts have largely failed, from the new towns of the London area, where people travel about as far to work as anywhere else, to fabled failures of Stockholm, where high rise housing close to suburban employment centers now houses migrants who tend to have far lower incomes than native Swedes. read more »
Despite its smart growth policies, the city of Austin has approved a new development on the urban fringe that will include new detached housing starting at $115,000.
Austin is the third fastest growing metropolitan area with more than 1,000,000 residents in the United States, following Raleigh, North Carolina and Las Vegas. The city of Austin accounted for 53% (672,000) of the metropolitan area's 1.27 million population in 2000, but has seen more than 70% of the growth since that time go to the suburbs. Now the metropolitan area has 1.65 million people, and the city has 785,000. read more »