Smart City Contributors

Decades of sprawl. Burdensome regulations that discourage investment in historic, neighborhoods. Rising property taxes and decreasing levels of municipal services. Increasingly fragile cities that must manage escalating demands on shrinking resources.These challenges – and a host of possible responses – will be the focus of BOOTSTRAP CITY: THE CASE FOR AGILITY, a series of three […]

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by SCM (RSS) Uncategorized | April 11th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From The Nation:   The Supreme Court. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)In the past four years, under the leadership of Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court has made it far easier to buy an election and far harder to vote in one. First came the Court’s 2010 decision in Citizens United v. FEC, which brought us […]

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by SCM (RSS) Transportation | April 10th, 2014 3:33pm CDT | No Comments

From Planetizen: After the American Public Transit Association announced that public transit ridership reached an all-time high of over 10 billion riders, a variety of commentators sought to minimize the importance of this news, using a wide variety of arguments. Transit critics seek to deny news of ridership increases to encourage politicians to reduce transit […]

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by SCM (RSS) Economic Development | April 9th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Business Journals: Note: We don’t post many of these rankings but we make an exception since this is one compiled by newspapers that include our own Memphis Business Journal. Each market’s score has been determined by a six-part formula. (See the methodology sidebar for a full explanation.) The following chart includes a selection of […]

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by SCM (RSS) Education | April 8th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Salon: School voucher programs are being debated everywhere you turn — in courtrooms, in state governments, and even in popular culture. Just  Thursday, Republicans in Florida tried and failed to expand their state’s voucher program. On  Friday, Arizona’s Supreme Court ruled that using state funds to pay for children’s education at religious and private schools was constitutional. […]

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From Governing: Implementation plans for government programs are as diverse as the constituents that they are meant to serve. What led to extraordinary results and outcomes in one city or state may cause the program to fall flat on its face in another jurisdiction. But while every program needs to be tailored for its particular […]

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by SCM (RSS) Regionalism, Tennessee Legislature | April 4th, 2014 3:12pm CDT | No Comments

From Governing: Rural Areas Lose People But Not Power Rural lawmakers are dwindling in number as people continue to migrate to metropolitan areas. But the battle between urban and rural politics is as big as ever — and those out in the country may be winning. by Alan Greenblatt | April 2014 Jim Wheeler represents […]

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by SCM (RSS) Planning and Urban Design | April 3rd, 2014 3:10pm CDT | 1 Comment

Note: Interesting, we’re better off than other Tennessee metros. From Governing: A new report ranks U.S. metro areas by how compact and connected they are, linking development policies to higher life expectancy and chances of upward mobility for residents. Researchers from the University of Utah’s Metropolitan Research Center and Smart Growth America, an organization that […]

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by SCM (RSS) Downtown Revitalization, Taxation | April 2nd, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Columbus Dispatch: The city of Columbus bypassed $8.3 million in property taxes in 2013 as part of a 12-year-old effort to increase the number of people living Downtown. The neighborhood has become one of the most popular — and most expensive — in central Ohio, but the city isn’t planning to eliminate the tax […]

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by SCM (RSS) Talent, Trends and Issues | April 1st, 2014 3:21pm CDT | No Comments

From Campaign for America’s Future: The Pew Research Center recently released a study finding that the Millennial generation – those born between the early 1980s and 2000 – is increasingly alienated from the major institutions of American society. Many are turned off by religion and see little difference between the two major political parties. They’re […]

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by SCM (RSS) Education | March 31st, 2014 3:27pm CDT | 1 Comment

From Campaign for America’s Future: An article posted on Politico today adds new evidence of the damage being done to K-12 education under the guise of “school choice,” and how much many of us are paying to place some of our own core values under attack: about $1 billion across 14 states with school voucher […]

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by SCM (RSS) Planning and Urban Design | March 27th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Vancouver Sun: I’ve been attending public meetings about community planning and development for more than 35 years. I’ve sat through more than 300 public hearings about rezonings, community plans and development projects in municipalities throughout the Lower Mainland. I have attended probably double that number of open houses, planning committee meetings, design panels, neighbourhood […]

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by SCM (RSS) Livability, Trends and Issues | March 26th, 2014 3:06pm CDT | No Comments

“Watch out, watch out, watch out!” a toddler yells, hoisting a toy truck to his shoulders. I step out of the way as he zooms down the sidewalk. I’m in Share-It Square, a revamped intersection in a verdant Portland, Oregon neighbourhood. The main street – lined with antique shops, shady porches and front yards resembling […]

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by SCM (RSS) Leadership | March 25th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From The Atlantic: Is America in an irreversible decline? Four years ago, when I came home after a long stay in China, many people viewed China as unstoppable, while America seemed to be falling apart. Fortunately, what I heard from economists, historians, entrepreneurs, and others I interviewed at the time were hopeful signs that have […]

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by SCM (RSS) Uncategorized | March 24th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

We got the following email from our friend Doug Imig.  It’s a message we should remember and a success story all of us should tout: Two years ago this month, Governor and Mrs. Haslam, Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell, and Memphis Mayor AC Wharton gathered in Memphis to applaud the release of a research report that […]

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by SCM (RSS) Poverty, Trends and Issues | March 21st, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Angry Bear: It’s always the same map. Here from Brad Delong is the map of the percentage who were slave by county in 1861   here is the corresponding area of a map of intergenerational relative income mobility by county from R Chetty 2014   Here is a map of male life expectancy at […]

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by SCM (RSS) City of Memphis Government, Neighborhoods | March 20th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | 1 Comment

From Governing: Few urban problems are more insidious than blight. Vacant or dilapidated properties suppress property values, threaten public safety, chase away investment and hurt quality of life. Blight was a challenge for New Orleans even before Hurricane Katrina flooded nearly 80 percent of the city’s housing stock in 2005. By 2010, New Orleans had […]

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by SCM (RSS) Poverty | March 18th, 2014 3:55pm CDT | No Comments

From Atlantic Cities: By Richard Florida Debates in the U.S. over income inequality have taken center stage in recent years, but its existence in our cities is of long standing. Major metro areas have been magnets for both the rich and the poor since ancient times; in fact they owe a great deal of their […]

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by SCM (RSS) Planning and Urban Design | March 14th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Sustainable Cities Collective: The City of Baltimore is in dire need of new residents. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake appears to have her sights on so-called “new Baltimoreans” to fill the city’s empty houses. Baltimore’s current population of 621,342, while a spirited group, is not enough to support the services provided by the City. Gaining new […]

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by SCM (RSS) Parks and Greening | March 13th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | No Comments

From Sustainable Cities Collaborative: Tree Wood / Tochihiro Oki Architects For millennium, designers of our built and natural environments have positioned the viewer in nature, setting benches in just the right spots with gorgeous vistas, or even creating pavilions or pagodas that offer both a respite from the world and a vantage point for engaging […]

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by SCM (RSS) Planning and Urban Design | March 12th, 2014 3:00pm CDT | 4 Comments

From Next City: Story by Don Terry Zoning had never been particularly controversial business in Baldwin County, Ala. A fast-growing county right across the bay from the office towers of Mobile, Baldwin was the sort of place where local officials voted on projects and then went out for oysters. Two years ago, that changed. On […]

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by SCM (RSS) Poverty | March 11th, 2014 3:01pm CDT | No Comments

From Atlantic Cities: Last week I wrote about an important new study, published in the journal Science, that found that poverty itself – coping with the ever-present state of not having enough to live on – taxes the brain to the point where the poor move through life as if experiencing the equivalent of a […]

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