Urban Issues

The New Boom Towns

iStock_000004080668XSmall.jpg

The steep hike in gas and energy prices has created a national debate about the future of American metropolitan areas -- mostly about the reputed decline of suburbs and edge cities dependent on cars. But with all this focus on the troubles of traditional suburbs, one big story is overlooked: the rapid rise of America’s energy-producing metropolitan areas.  read more »

Houston, New York Has a Problem

iStock_000002251133XSmall.jpg

The Southern city welcomes the middle class; heavily regulated and expensive Gotham drives it away.

New Yorkers are rightly proud of their city's renaissance over the last two decades, but when it comes to growth, Gotham pales beside Houston.  read more »

Suburbs Thriving, Cities Stagnating in Keystone State

iStock_000004466019XSmall.jpg

The headline in the Philadelphia Inquirer said it all, “Philadelphia’s population shrinking, though region’s is growing.” This in the midst of what is purported to be a condominium boom in its thriving center city.

But facts are facts: Philadelphia’s population has dropped 4.5 percent. This ranks it first among the top-25 U.S. cities in population loss from 2000-2007. This data causes you to pause and rethink the real impact of major public investments in the city spurred on by a governor who is the city’s former two-term mayor.  read more »

What does the end of cheap oil mean to our urban futures?

iStock_000004615314XSmall.jpg

The Contrasting Views.
One of the most common topics on blog sites and newsgroups here and around the world is "What does the end of cheap oil mean to the future of our cities?"  read more »

Where Are the Best Cities to Do Business?

iStock_000004196508XSmall.jpg

Our comprehensive annual guide to which places are thriving -- even in an economy many consider in recession.

By Joel Kotkin and Michael Shires

What a difference a year and a deflated housing bubble makes. Inc.com's 2008 list of the Best Cities for Doing Business, created in conjunction with Newgeography.com, uncovered some of the most dramatic changes since we started this ranking back in 2004. Five major trends were immediately revealed; trends that are shaping the business environment right now across the country and will continue to over the next several years.  read more »

Suburbia's Not Dead Yet

iStock_000002169427XSmall.jpg

While millions of American families struggle with falling house prices, soaring gasoline costs and tightening credit, some environmentalists, urban planners and urban real estate speculators are welcoming the bad news as signaling what they have long dreamed of -- the demise of suburbia.  read more »

Commuting Patterns in Multi-Centered Urban Settings: The Case of Southern California

iStock_000005827788XSmall.jpg

American suburbs are gradually leaving behind their Ozzie and Harriet days and evolving in ways that might surprise even their critics. Today’s suburbs are more diverse, are populated with double income families and offer more job opportunities than were the old “bedroom” communities of the past. Many suburbs, particularly newer ones, are designed to be ‘greener’ and more sustainable, combining planned medium densities with functioning pedestrian-friendly town centers and other urban amenities.  read more »

Commuting Suicide -- the District of Columbia wants to be a residential suburb

iStock_000002964670XSmall.jpg

The Washington Post’s recent article about how the District government is making plans to make the city “less-welcoming to suburban cars” is one more example of suicidal behavior that the city is known for.

Unfortunately, other cities are thinking similarly.  read more »

Moving from the Cities to the Suburbs... and Beyond

iStock_000004313858XSmall.jpg

The current concern over soaring gas prices has raised serious questions about the sustainability of what we commonly consider “the American dream”. Some urban boosters and environmentalists seem positively giddy about the prospects that suburbanites, reeling under the impact of high-energy prices, will soon be forced to give up their cars  read more »

The Zero at Ground Zero

iStock_000005845250XSmall.jpg

The terrorists who attacked the World Trade Center on 9-11-01 were striking a blow—a devastating one they hoped--at what they saw as the heart of capitalism and free markets in the United States. But in the aftermath of the attack,  read more »