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European Mayors Band Their Cities Together to Fight Climate Change

March 30, 2015 by David Thorpe

The Covenant of Mayors

Mayors of 30 cities in Europe have signed a joint initiative on climate change in which they pledged to undertake to "reduce by at least 40% (their) greenhouse gases by 2030", in line with the European Union's goal and pledged to collectively purchase clean energy technology to make it more competitive.[read more]

Can France's Plan to Use Planning for Social Engineering Really Work?

March 30, 2015 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Immigants and the poor would be put in richer neighborhoods.

The French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, has unveiled shocking measures to change struggling neighborhoods, by forcing richer ones to take a greater share of the poor and disadvantaged in an effort to tackle the crime and social problems of ghettos. Can he succeed?[read more]

Night Time Informal Street Trade in Bangkok Creates Jobs, Unlike in Cape Town

March 26, 2015 by Cape Town Partnership

Informal economies create jobs and should be encouraged.

In Bangkok informal economic activity on the streets is well accepted and facilitated, leading to a dynamic night-time informal trade culture. Informal trade is pronounced in the city centre in areas such as Siam Square. This is in great contrast to the situation in Cape Town.[read more]

Village in the City: A View from Kuala Lumpur

March 26, 2015 by Future Cape Town

Change in Kuala Lumpur

Kampung Baru’s vernacular architecture and human scale has remained a village within a city, with low-rise wooden detached houses, kitchens and cafes spilling into the streets, and rich social life. Ethnic Malay families from several villages were relocated here and given land rights to maintain a ‘village life.’[read more]

Manipulate the Housing Market with this One Neat Trick

March 24, 2015 by David Edmondson
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Regulations often result in unintended consequences. Money flows to find any crack in the system, after all, and often those cracks are in very odd places. Zoning and building codes are no different, and they can manipulate not just how people do business but how we built our cities.[read more]

$150 Million to Transform Sustainable Public Transport in Mexico City

Urban Mexico and Sustainable Transportation

With a metropolitan population of more than 21 million people—and growing quickly—Mexico City faces distinct challenges in delivering sustainable urban mobility. Whether to combat a long history of urban sprawl or to meet the mobility needs of different communities, the city has had to innovate.[read more]

Book Review: The New Sustainability Advantage

March 17, 2015 by Derek Wong

Businesses and Sustainability

Proactively incorporating sustainability into a business’ core strategy can increase profits by 51 to 81%, according to corporate sustainability expert and author Bob Willard. His book The New Sustainability Advantage and the companion online tools lay out seven strategies and estimate potential returns.[read more]

How the Iconic Vancouver Special Became a Symbol of the City's Lack of Affordable Housing

March 11, 2015 by Jillian Glover

Housing in Vancouver

Vancouver is the 2nd least affordable city in the world. The Vancouver Special was once a symbol of working class immigrants dreaming of a prosperous life in Canada. Now, it represents the ridiculous nature of its over-priced real estate market, populated by foreign investment.[read more]

Architect and Developer Partner to Build Affordable Prefab Housing in Sweden

March 5, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

Prefab Housing in Sweden

In this month’s issue of Monocle magazine they profile an interesting prefabricated and affordable housing project in Knivsta, Sweden. The way it was built is quite simple. The modular housing units were fabricated off-site and then inserted on-site into a prefabricated concrete frame.[read more]

What Will the Condo Market Look Like in 10-20 Years?

March 4, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

The future of condos looks good as cities densify

Over the past week I’ve had two separate people ask me my thoughts on the future of the condo market in Toronto. One of them was working on a University study and one of them was trying to figure out what (condo) property managers would look like in the future.[read more]

Where the Jobs are Being Created in Cities

March 3, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

Cities and Job Creation

According to a new report released by City Observatory, US cities have officially reversed a 50-year trend towards decentralization. In some ways, it just makes intuitive sense. People started returning to cities and so the jobs followed (although there were also structural changes to the economy).[read more]

Historical Vandalism? Vancouver Remembers Past Landmarks With Signage

March 3, 2015 by Jillian Glover

Vancouver History and Marketing

There is a trend in Vancouver where clever real estate marketers name condos – and sometimes even rebuild or leave the old signage – to commemorate more historically important and interesting buildings that are being torn down. Here are some examples.[read more]