cities

"A Cloud of Contagion": States, Cities, and Federal Default

The Pew Center on the States has released a new report examining the impact a potential federal default would have on state and municipal governments. The picture isn't pretty.  read more »

Subjects:

More Hyperbole on Ghost Cities in China

The so-called Chinese "Ghost Cities" have been the subject of a number of articles in recent months. There appears to be some truth in the reports, such as in the building of a near empty new city in Inner Mongolia (Ordos). There is also a good deal of hyperbole.  read more »

Which Modes are “Multi-Modal” & Enhance Mobility?

One thing that makes Smart Growth appealing is its language.  Terms like “livability” and “transit-oriented development” sound engaging, and “smart” growth is, frankly, self-flattering for its acolytes.  On transportation matters, advocates rarely declare their intent to reduce roadway capacity and divert money to transit projects (along with other auto unfriendly policies).  Instead, they say they are pursuing a “multi-modal” strategy to promote “transportation choice.”  read more »

Turn the Focus Towards Australia's Regional Towns

Too much property reporting and media attention is given to our capital cities, and not enough effort is spent analysing our regional towns. 

As a result, too few investors understand Australia’s regional potential.  Right now, not only are many of our regional centres at the bottom of their cycle, but larger, long-term trends are at play.  Indeed, regional Australia is on the cusp of some big demographic changes.   read more »

Zhengzhou Ghost City Alive!

Zhengzhou, Henan, China (March 28, 2011): In December, London’s Daily Mail reported that the Zhengzhou New Area was China’s largest “Ghost City.” A visit to the Zhengzhou New Area indicates exactly the opposite. Chinese “Ghost Cities” are large areas of new development that are virtually unoccupied. The most famous example is Ordos, a new and reportedly empty city, built to replace an older city in Inner Mongolia.  read more »

Major Metropolitan Areas: Summary of the First 20

Data is now available for 20 of the nation’s 52 metropolitan areas with more than 1,000,000 population. The early results indicate a pattern of accelerating dispersion of the population to the suburbs as is indicated in the table below. Thus far, historic core municipality growth has been approximately one-half the 1990s rate. During the 2000s, the historic cores have accounted for 8.8 percent of metropolitan growth, down nearly one-half from the 1990s rate.  read more »

New Metro GDP Data Released

The Bureau of Economic Analysis yesterday released the 2009 data for metropolitan area GDP. Their headline, “Economic Decline Widespread in 2009,” should come as a surprise to no one.  read more »

Segregation and Quality of Life

CensusScope’s dissimilarity index measures the distributions of blacks and whites across a city to quantify the level of integration and segregation. The site discerned three major Midwestern cities in the top ten: Detroit, MI in second; Milwaukee, WI in third; and Chicago, IL in fifth. These cities are major hubs for their region, both socially and economically. But does segregation affect quality of life? And does it help or hinder job growth?  read more »

Vancouver: Moving to the Suburbs

A few weeks ago, The New York Times touted purported savings that a household would save by living in the core city of New York (in Brooklyn) instead of the suburbs (South Orange, New Jersey). The article downplayed the 1,000 fewer square feet the money bought in Brooklyn and did not consider the 40% higher cost of living.  read more »

Surprise, Frisco and Beaumont Among Fastest Growing

The Bureau of the Census has updated its city (municipality or local government area) population estimates for 2009. Predictably, anti-suburban interests saw more indication of the elusive (read non-existent) exodus from the suburbs to the central cities. One analyst even suggested that a "high quality" of life in one central city (Washington, DC) might have kept people from moving to the suburbs.  read more »