Pittsburgh

Reshoring America: Can the Heartland Lead the Way?

manufacturing-locations-usa.png

The COVID-19 pandemic has had overwhelming impacts on our economy, not to mention the impact on lives and personal wellness.

The critical lack of medical equipment to treat and protect those affected highlights the over-reliance of United States manufacturing sector on overseas production. The offshoring issue extends beyond current pandemic concerns, however, reaching far larger and more permanent concerns over industrial supply chains, worker training and even national security.  read more »

California and Urban Cores Dominate Overcrowded Housing

LosAngeles-aerial-crowded-housing.jpg

Concern about overcrowded housing has been heightened by its association with greater COVID-19 infection risk. As a disease transmitted by human proximity, exposure is increased by being in overcrowded and insufficiently ventilated spaces where sufficient social distancing is not possible. Exposure density for a person is intensified by the amount of time spent in such circumstances.  read more »

The Heartland's Revival

Palmer_Across_the_Continent-e1597185754222.jpg

For roughly the past half century, the middle swath of America has been widely written off as reactionary, backward, and des­tined for unceasing decline.  read more »

The Twilight of Great American Cities is Here. Can We Stop It?

southern-manhattan-sunset_ed-yourdon.jpg

The dreadful death of George Floyd lit a fire that threatens to burn down America’s cities. Already losing population before the pandemic, our major urban centers have provided ideal kindling for conflagration with massive unemployment, closed businesses and already rising crime rates.  read more »

The Vital Midwest

john-austin-midwest-map.jpg

John Austin at the Michigan Economic Center is a long time commentator on Midwest economic issues, going back to at least his 2006 Brookings Institute report “The Vital Center.”  read more »

Jews Could Swing the 2020 Election — and Why That's Not a Good Thing

pittsburgh-protests-squirrel-hill.jpg

In our selfie-defined culture, it’s usually considered a good thing to get attention, the more the better. But it may not be the case for Jews, or for Israel, to be  caught in the firestorm that is burning through American politics in ways not seen since the Second World War. “That Israel is becoming a wedge issue in American politics,” notes author Daniel Gordis, “ bodes very badly for Israel’s future security.”  read more »

Of Niche Markets and Broad Markets: Commuting in the US

Interstate-5.jpg

The six transit legacy cities - mostly urban cores that grew largely before the advent of the automobile - increased their concentration of transit work trips to 57.9% of the national transit commuting, according to the 2018 American Community Survey. At the same time, working at home strengthened its position as the nation’s third leading mode of work access, with transit falling to fourth. The transit commuting market share dropped from 5.0% in 2017 to 4.9% in 2018.  read more »

Population Transformation in Pittsburgh and Chicago

Pittsburgh_Skyline_Morning.png

Out of the 53 metro areas with more than a million people, only four lost population last year. The two biggest losers were Pittsburgh and Chicago.

Both cities are ones where a significant cadre of local boosters brush off population loss, arguing that a closer look shows that they actually are undergoing a demographic transition that is actually putting them in a stronger position. So let’s take a look.  read more »

Black Homes Matter: The Fate of Affordable Housing in Pittsburgh

eastsideIII.jpg

“I live here.  I’m from here.  My whole family is here.   We try to stay close together.  This is America.  I’m a Marine, I went to war three times.  I served my country.  It feels crazy not to be able to live in my own area where I grew up,” writes an East Liberty resident in Black Homes Matter, a booklet describing alternative approaches to neighborhood revitalization in the city of Pittsburgh.  read more »

Family Friendly Cities

johnny-family.png

One of the common criticisms leveled at people who promote urban living goes something like this. “Cities are great for college kids, people starting off in their careers, bohemians, and maybe some older empty nesters with money who have a taste for theater and art. But most people have families and tight budgets. Suburbia is the only place that provides a high quality, safe, affordable life for regular folks with children.”  read more »