Urban Issues

Pandemics and Pandemonium

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Minneapolis and urban centers across America are burning, most directly in response to the brutal killing of a black man by a white Minnesota police officer. But the rage ignited by the death of George Floyd is symptomatic of a profound sense of alienation that has been building for years among millions of poor, working class urbanites.  read more »

How Coronavirus Pandemic is Bringing a Return to Feudalism

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The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted many things, but also accelerated America’s descent into a new form of feudalism. The preexisting conditions of extreme economic concentration, inequality and reduced social mobility already were painfully evident before, but the pandemic has made them considerably worse.  read more »

The Virus's Uneven Path

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In this miserable COVID-19 spring, it’s tempting for remote workers to vent our frustrations with being hemmed in, forced to stare at screens while unable to do much else other than walk around the block or go to Costco. Yet the pain felt by the teleworking middle class is dwarfed by that of working-class Americans.  read more »

Why This New Yorker Returned to the Midwest

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New Urbanism Editor Lewis McCrary's Note: Before the pandemic changed the urban landscape of American life, the last two decades have seen a familiar dynamic: the coastal cities have recorded dramatic increases of wealth as highly-educated workers concentrate in a few major metro areas, including New York, San Francisco, and Washington.  read more »

Apps For Minimizing Exposure Densities

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As much of the world begins reopening from lockdown, it will be important for all of us to observe the extraordinary cautions to prevent exposure to the COVID-19 virus, both for ourselves and the people around us. There are already tracking applications that will help identify the source of infections, which is important for both reducing future exposures and the critical research to inform the most effective responses in future pandemics. But more important will be efforts to avoid infection in the first place.  read more »

The Coronavirus Is Also Spreading a Dark New Era of Neo-Feudalism

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Adapted from The Coming of Neo-Feudalism (Encounter Books). 

The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the global shift already underway towards a neo-feudal society. With the middle-class economy largely shut down and, in the best-case scenario, in for a long and painful recovery, the population that is barely hanging on is expanding rapidly in America and around the world.  read more »

Blue City Lockdowns Obscure COVID's Root Causes

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It will be months, likely years, before we understand how COVID-19 has reshaped our communities. Yet there is enough data, based on just the last three months, to get some notion of what areas and populations are most vulnerable.  read more »

Subjects:

The Future of Residential and Commercial Real Estate

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What is the future of real estate after Covid-19? Please join Richard Florida, Joel Kotkin, Marshall Toplansky and other leading experts to see where the real estate market is going. We will be discussing issues including the future of office space, retail, affordable housing, inner cities, suburbs and small towns.  read more »

Culture and Coronavirus: Pohang Journal

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Korea’s success, to date, in limiting the spread of the new coronavirus without extensive lockdowns has been widely acknowledged. A May 6, 2020 Atlantic article provides an excellent description of the “trace, test and treat” system employed here. The text messages used to trace new infections are even more detailed than described.  read more »

The Sad State of LA Transit

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Once widely seen in the media as “the next great transit city”, the Los Angeles area’s rapid transit boom was turning to a bust — and well before the Covid19 crisis. As we can see below, transit ridership in greater Los Angeles, the nation’s densest urban region, has been declining for years, and things are not likely to get much better with the impact of the pandemic.  read more »