Cities love to use Tax Increment Financing to boost development. Should they?

Tax Increment Financing. Local governments often hail this tool as a way to revitalize investment-deprived neighborhoods, fix dilapidated roads, clean up polluted waters, revamp blighted property, and foster commercial activity and job creation. It’s often poorly understood by city taxpayers, but it... More

Five Low Cost Ideas to Make Your City Wealthier

What we have not figured out—and what we won’t figure out with another flood of federal infrastructure spending—is how to translate maintenance into growth. How do we go out and fill potholes and fix leaking pipes and have that result... More

Public Transit Is a Public Good. It’s Time to Fund It That Way.

This is the year we almost let public transportation die. The cuts that cash-strapped transit agencies proposed before being bailed out by Congress—eliminating 40 percent of New York City’s subway service, a fifth of the DC region’s Metro stations, two-thirds of Atlanta’s... More

MapLab: The High Cost of Wide Streets

Among the most visible changes in the built environment from the pandemic are reimagined streets. During lockdowns, cities all over the world turned residential and commercial corridors into slow (or no) vehicle zones for pedestrians, cyclists, cafe seating, parklets and... More

The case for building $1,500 parks

A groundbreaking new study shows that access to “greened” vacant lots reduced feelings of worthlessness and depression, especially in low-resource neighborhoods. More

How the Pandemic is Accelerating Workforce Training

For decades, manufacturers in the United States have warned of a massive skills gap: that there are not enough new workers with the skills needed to make up for older ones who are retiring. President Biden has proposed $100 billion... More

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