Sign up | Login with →

Taxes & Mortgages

Battle of the Public Intellectuals: Edward Glaeser vs. Richard Florida

July 25, 2014 by Jim Russell

Intellectuals and Public Debate

Austin has a gentrification problem. Dallas has a gentrification problem. Houston has a gentrification problem. On the other hand, Brownsville looks dirt cheap. If cost of rent drives migration, then everyone in Austin should move to Pittsburgh, or Brownsville (which offers even cheaper rent than Pittsburgh).[read more]

Obstacles Ahead for São Paulo's Master Plan

July 22, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Sao Paulo's Plan

The Master Plan of the city of São Paulo is a set of guidelines, backed by the power of local law, whose purpose is to guide urban growth through the next sixteen years. The new plan was approved this week after nine months of discussions among councilors to arrive at the final version.[read more]

Milan's City of Business: Urban Planning in Economic Form

July 16, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Milan Urban Business Planning

It is both impressive and beautiful to understand the evolution of Milan, simply by looking at its skyline. Like any other Italian city, even if it may not be as pronounced as it is in Rome or Venice, Milan has a central core pattern of architecture.[read more]

Affordable Housing: Geography of Supply and Demand

July 14, 2014 by Jim Russell

Geography and Housing and Supply and Demand

Consider a metro area, which is functionally defined in terms of commuting for work. The wages within the region act as a cap on the high-end of the real estate market. At a minimum, housing supply is responsive to population change. Less people need less housing.[read more]

Landlords Forced to Update Bedsit and Studio Style Apartments in Dublin, Ireland

July 12, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Dublin and Landlords

Since new regulations came into effect in Dublin, it is impossible to deny their impact on the housing market. The increase in the number of houses coming on the market that are divided into a number of individual units is undeniable and for-sale signs have popped up outside many places.[read more]

Further Evidence that Laneway Housing is Going to Happen

July 11, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Laneway Housing

Earlier this week Fast Company ran a piece talking about “the next big thing in urban planning" — backyard cottages. As the name suggests, backyard cottages are basically accessory dwellings built in the backyards of existing single family homes.[read more]

The Geopolitics of Gentrification

July 10, 2014 by Jim Russell

Gentrification and Politics

A bunch of Russian oligarchs want to buy some hot New York City real estate. How can we cool their jets? Greater density! Deregulate zoning and let developers build as the market demands. With greater supply, the returns on foreign investment diminish. Right? Wrong.[read more]


English Cities Demand More Power and Tax-Raising Abilities

July 9, 2014 by David Thorpe

Manchester sees a new dawn

English cities such as Manchester and Birmingham should have the right to raise more taxes, says an influential cross-party committee of MPs, who are calling for a transfer of power from central government to local authorities and local communities.[read more]

Illusion of Local: Why Zoning for Greater Density Will Fail to Make Housing More Affordable

July 8, 2014 by Jim Russell

Density and Housing Markets

Gentrification is an urban policy problem in need of a theory. Instead of theory, we have the geographic illusion of local: The current landscape is the result of community decisions. Gentrifiers, outsiders who move into a neighborhood, cause real estate prices to appreciate and displace more tenured residents.[read more]

Pop-Up Housing (It's Not What You Think It Is)

July 8, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Pop-Up Housing

You were probably expecting some kind of temporary housing solution. Because that’s certainly what I was thinking when somebody tweeted me about it. But it turns out that in D.C., “pop-up housing” has come to mean a pencil thin house rising amongst a bunch of low-rise rowhouses.[read more]

Stuck in Condoland?

June 27, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Toronto Life recently published an interesting article called Stuck in Condoland and there seems to be a lot of interest in the topic. It basically profiles the lives of a few young families who live downtown and are trying to raise young children in relatively small condos (think 700 square feet).[read more]

Why Vancouver's Housing Market Hinges on China's Economy

June 25, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Vancouver, Housing, and China

In case you weren’t aware, Vancouver is an incredibly expensive city when it comes to real estate. The average price for a single-family detached house is now around C$1 million. By some measures, that makes it the most expensive housing market in North America.[read more]