How can city planning increase equity for all? Sheila Foster, Professor of Law and Public Policy for Georgetown University; Anika Goss, Executive Director at Detroit Future City; and Paul Mogush, Manager of Long Term Planning for the City of Minneapolis, Minnesota; joined Jennifer Bradley, Director of the Aspen Institute Center for Urban Innovation, to discuss at CityLab 2019. Follow this link to view the video.
For those individuals among us who possess a talent for art, opportunities to create something beautiful can be found all around us. Everywhere you look, there are empty walls that are just crying out to become something more beautiful, if only someone would take the time. Thankfully, there are plenty of incredibly talented street artists out there who are doing just that, turning drab public spaces into explosions of color and creativity. Check out the gallery here.
Health and success begin at home, yet millions of Americans live in housing that is making them sick. Young children are particularly vulnerable to lead poisoning and asthma. NLC is committed to supporting member efforts to provide safe and affordable housing for every family. NLC has selected six cities through a competitive application process to come together on health hazards in housing. The Healthy Housing City Leaders’ Forum will first convene in Charlotte, North Carolina in December. The six participating cities are:
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Charlotte, North Carolina
Durham, North Carolina
Jersey City, New Jersey
Each city has convened a cross-sector team that includes city department heads, implementers, and health partners. With the generous support of The JPB Foundation, this initiative will enable city teams to develop and implement a targeted action plan to improve housing conditions in their community. Follow this link to learn more.
Fort Collins, Colorado entered the Cities of Opportunity pilot cohort, an initiative to work in a comprehensive way to improve health and equity, with the intention to focus on housing. The city’s team evolved to focus instead on childcare availability, exemplifying the Cities of Opportunity approach to meet cities where they are. The Fort Collins team intentionally reached out to partners to be supportive and not duplicative of what is already happening in this area. NLC spoke with Sue Beck-Ferkiss, social policy and housing programs manager with the City of Fort Collins, about how their team identified affordable childcare as a key need and pivoted to most effectively expanding it in their city. Follow this link to read more.
Traffic congestion in cities across the nation is on a disarming trendline heading upward, fueled, in part, by a strong economy and car-centered transportation networks. American drivers spent an average of 54 hours in traffic in 2017, according to the 2019 Urban Mobility Report, recently released by the Texas A&M University Transportation Institute. This finding is 15 percent higher than it was five years ago. The study reviewed traffic in 494 urban areas nationwide. “Usually, the first step of doing anything is understanding the problem,” said Bill Eisele, a co-author of the report. “And I think what we do a good job of is explaining just how extensive the problem is, and then from there we can begin to have the policy and other discussions about what we can do to fix it.” Follow this link to read more.
As Americans, we see transportation as freedom. Give us a car and the open road, a bustling transit system, or bike lanes for miles. Transportation connects us to people and opportunity—and good infrastructure can make our lives better. This notion doesn’t end at the modes that move people. Freight trains are often the forgotten side of rail infrastructure, chugging day in, day out across our cities to deliver goods we rely on. Everything from consumer products to food to energy resources moves by rail. As infrastructure sits top of mind for policymakers at all levels of government, and we approach re-authorization of the federal highway program in 2020, it’s useful to reflect on our strengths. Privately funded freight rail is one of these strengths, an infrastructure asset that delivers stronger economies, more jobs, less congestion, and cleaner skies, all of which impacts municipalities. Here are five ways trains are driving cities forward. Follow this link to learn more.
On any given night, there are over half a million people experiencing homelessness in America, including 36,000 unaccompanied youth. According to the recent The State of Homelessness in America report, over one-third of all homeless people are living unsheltered on the street, in cars or in other places unfit for human habitation. While most Americans experiencing homelessness can find shelter at local emergency and transitional housing facilities, or with family and friends, the number of unsheltered individuals and families has increased for the third year in a row. This recent uptick in people living in unsheltered places has very visibly manifested itself in the growth and proliferation of homeless encampments in cities across the country. Follow this link to learn more.
Communities flourish when everyone within them has the opportunity to flourish. When urban-serving universities and communities join forces, we can confront the complexities of education, healthcare, economic, and human development in order to:
Prepare an increasingly diverse workforce to successfully navigate careers through technological, economic, and social change.
Assess, treat, and prevent urban health risks for increasingly diverse populations.
Create sustainable solutions for continued and inclusive growth that improve the quality of life in our communities.
Join educators, industry, nonprofit, and community leaders at The Ohio State University on Tuesday, January 28, 2020 from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. EST in the Ohio Union to exchange ideas and reinvigorate the collective efforts toward strengthening and sustaining vibrant, inclusive communities. Follow this link to learn more.