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Taxes & Mortgages

Use of Public Transportation in Brazil Dropped 25% in Past 15 Years

June 20, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Brazil and Public Transportation

The lack of adequate transportation policies and the frequent increase in taxes, as well as an increased purchasing power, caused a 25% drop in the use of public transport in Brazil in the last 15 years. Depending on the location, it is cheaper to use a motorcycle or a car than public transport.[read more]

Rising Property Taxes in São Paulo, Amongst Poor Municipal Planning

June 19, 2014 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Brazil, Taxes, and Planning

After a court barred a proposal to increase property taxes in Rio de Janeiro, the administration of Mayor Fernando Haddad chose another way to raise taxes. The administration proposed an increase in the calculation basis of the ITBI tax, to be levied in cases of a real estate transfer.[read more]

Not So Much 'New York Poor' as 'Pittsburgh Rich'

June 12, 2014 by Jim Russell

Local Economics and Income Inequality

If it isn't completely dead already, “Slacker” Austin is certainly dying. In its place comes things like ambition, purpose, and a career. Along with the embrace of success comes the gentrification of what made Austin, Texas, so attractive in the first place.[read more]

Why Fake Vintage Buildings are a Blow to Architecture, Historic Neighborhoods, and the Character of a City

June 9, 2014 by Tazmine Loomans

Vintage Buildings and Urban Character

Imagine a fake Mona Lisa hanging next to authentic masterpieces. People with an untrained eye would have no idea that it was fake, they would think it was real. And what if it was painted by a company standing to profit from making you believe that what you’re seeing is the real thing?[read more]

Guinness' Impact on Dublin's Public Housing: The Iveagh Trust & Hostel

Guinness and Dublin Housing

There is perhaps no brand that is more closely associated with Ireland, and in particular Dublin, than Guinness. The company has made a huge impact on the culture, economy, architecture, and even the history of the city in an immeasurable amount of ways.[read more]

How Melbourne's New Urban Growth Boundary will Shape the City

Melbourne Growth Boundary

The Melbourne Minister for Planning recently approved five new towers to be situated in the Southbank area of the central business district. This comes with the recent release of Plan Melbourne, a document on the future of Melbourne as it battles rising congestion and scarcity of affordable housing.[read more]


NEW VIDEO: Urban Infrastructure Initiative for Linking Business with Cities

June 6, 2014 by Matthew Lynch

Cities and business can both become more sustainable together.

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development's Urban Infrastructure Initiative is a unique global project that has demonstrated the value of early collaborative engagement between cities and business for sustainable development.[read more]

How Toronto is Growing

June 4, 2014 by Brandon Donnelly

Toronto Growth

If there are two things we like to talk about here in Toronto it’s that there are a lot of condos going up and that it’s becoming increasingly difficult—some would say impossible—to get around. Just this past weekend, I had 2 or 3 people tell me that biking is the only practical way to get around.[read more]

Turning Real Estate Market Fundamentals on Their Head

May 29, 2014 by Jim Russell

Flipping the Real Estate Market

On one side of the gentrification problem, we have to deal with the issue of the paucity of the housing supply. And on the other side of the problem, we see increasing demand. I labor to detail gentrification from the demand side of the equation.[read more]

Giving Up on Urban Neighborhoods

May 27, 2014 by Jim Russell

Neighborhoods and Demographics

“Like an immune system attached to the virus,” was how Michael Braverman (City of Baltimore) described the attack on vacancy with “data-driven tools for neighborhood revitalization." However, the target for city efforts wasn’t where the virus (building vacancy) was densest.[read more]

City of São Paulo, Brazil Invests to Buy the Occupied Mauá Building

Urban Renovation

The city of São Paulo, Brazil deposited R$11 million related to its offer for the building known as the Mauá occupation, located on the street of the same name in Luz, in the center of the capital. The occupation is one of the most emblematic of the city and, since 2007, is home to 237 families.[read more]


London Puts Banking Before the Environment - PwC report

May 22, 2014 by David Thorpe

The City of London

There has been much written already about the PricewaterhouseCoopers ranking of Cities of Opportunity and how London comes top, but digging deep into the report we can see how unsustainable the dominant criteria are and which cities perform better in environmental and social criteria.[read more]