Earlier this January, I talked with We Need Some Milk, a podcast discussing local politics and urban policy. Since the hosts and I shared such a wide-ranging and fun conversation, they decided to make my appearance a two-part episode.Continue reading
While deep in my research at the New York Public Library on a undisclosed topic, I recently came across the 1923 edition of New York Walk Book, a hiking guide for the metropolitan area. The book provides itineraries, guides, and maps for both urban flaneurs and nature lovers. This wonderful volume inflamed my imagination.
A trio of academics attempt an engaging and instructive experiment with their recently published book, Gentrifier (University of Toronto Press, 2017). Through their own lives, John Joe Schlichtman, Jason Patch, and Marc Lamont Hill explore and challenge the ideas and parameters of gentrification.
Although the suburbs are anything but dead, an increasing number of Americans are choosing an urban life. Many cities (and historic streetcar suburbs) provide residents with walkable neighborhoods. More Americans want to step out their front doors and walk to a grocer, a cafe, or maybe even a movie theater. Meanwhile, Americans are rediscovering the needs and joys of community. These are encouraging, positive trends.
However, a renewed desire for urban living places pressure on cities’ housing markets. This leads to changes in the urban fabric and built environment. Boosters call this progress. Critics call it gentrification. A great debate concerning gentrification rages among activists, politicians, journalists, intellectuals, and everyday citizens in many improving cities and those poised for a rebound.