Archive for August, 2012

by (RSS) Uncategorized | August 31st, 2012 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on The Joys of Being a Tour Guide in Your Own City

From Atlantic Cities: Anyone who’s lived in a famous city gets used to a byproduct: visitors. “We’d love it if you’d show us around,” they say, as soon as they drop their backpacks and rolling bags and check their email. Polite people smile and say, “of course.” Less tolerant people tell them they’re on their […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | August 30th, 2012 3:22pm CDT | Comments Off on Bad Community Meeting Video

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by (RSS) Livability, Planning and Urban Design | August 29th, 2012 3:19pm CDT | Comments Off on Walking More Than 10 Minutes a Week

From Atlantic Cities: More than one-third of adults in the U.S. have not walked for more than 10 minutes straight over the course of the last week. People typically walk about 3 miles per hour, so a 10-minute walk covers just about half a mile. That’s like walking two-and-a-half laps around a football field, or […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Planning and Urban Design | August 29th, 2012 12:23am CDT | 13 Comments

A little over a year ago, we wrote this post: “We’re thinking that Family Dollar Store may have gotten its name because that’s how much it spends to erect its flimsy buildings. At a time when city and county officials talk about the positive impact of the Unified Development Code, it takes some of the […]

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by (RSS) Transportation | August 28th, 2012 2:58pm CDT | Comments Off on Creating The Airport of the Future

From Fast Company: More than 5 billion travelers passed through the airports of the world in 2011, according to Airports Council International. That’s an incredible number, considering the population of the entire planet is something like 7 billion. And all air travelers–everywhere, every day–stand united by something powerful: angst! Airports can be hell.From But for […]

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by (RSS) Education | August 27th, 2012 3:00pm CDT | 1 Comment

From Mother Jones:  STANDARDIZED TESTS may not tell us everything there is to know about a school like Mission High, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have their uses. And one of those uses is myth busting—in particular, the myth that America’s schools are in a state of terminal decline and students aren’t learning as […]

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                      It is easier to imagine Memphis without music than without the Mississippi River. After all, the city’s name itself stems from the impact that the river flowing by the wilderness settlement had on the founders of Memphis, inspiring mental images of the legendary Egyptian […]

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by (RSS) Education | August 24th, 2012 3:32pm CDT | Comments Off on Our Schools are Short-Changing Students of Color

From Think Progress: Schools with predominately minority student populations receive far less funding than schools with mostly white students thanks to a loophole in federal school funding laws, according to a report from the Center for American Progress released Wednesday. The report, titled “Unequal Education,” studied the different levels of per pupil funding in America’s […]

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Hannah Sayle’s cover story in this week’s Memphis Flyer confirmed the worst fears we had when Shelby County Government politicized family planning last year and added an overlay of religiosity. For no factual reason, county government removed funding from Planned Parenthood and gave it to Christ Community Health Services despite reports that women had been […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | August 23rd, 2012 3:16pm CDT | Comments Off on Memphis As Best Practice in Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Bioworks recently hosted Brad Smith, the interim director of Launch Tennessee.  Brad was here for a quarterly review of the Greater Memphis Accelerator Consortium’s activities and an overview of the progress made in building the entrepreneurial landscape in Memphis.  We had the opportunity to discuss more ways in which Memphis can partner and engage in […]

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The Sierra Club is holding a meeting Thursday about the proposed Kirby-Whitten highway through Shelby Farms Park.   It’s one of those projects that proves that no matter how many times we think we have contained the paving obsessions of traffic engineers, they always come back again with plans focused on about cars, not people. We […]

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by (RSS) Education | August 22nd, 2012 3:12pm CDT | Comments Off on Wanted: More Options for Schools

From Governing: A new report finds that the Camden, N.J., schools are failing to educate students and must make substantial changes or face state intervention. It is tragically familiar story, but the threatened response raises as many questions as it answers. State intervention can mean anything from a top-down district takeover to a bottom-up approach […]

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by (RSS) Education, Shelby County government, Taxation | August 20th, 2012 12:14am CDT | 8 Comments

              Municipal school districts are the educational equivalent of I-269, and that’s why the Shelby County Board of Commissioners is right to be deeply concerned about them. Both promise to have a parasitic effect on the urban host that feeds them, exacerbating problems, economic segregation, and realities that will […]

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by (RSS) Politics and Government | August 18th, 2012 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on Voter Suppression: Politics At Its Most Cynical

From The New Republic: THE GOP IS supposed to pretend that its 2012 strategy doesn’t include the systematic disenfranchisement of lower-income blacks and Latinos. But in June, Mike Turzai, Republican majority leader of the Pennsylvania House, blew his party’s cover by blurting out: “Voter ID, which is going to allow Governor [Mitt] Romney to win the state […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | August 16th, 2012 6:09pm CDT | 9 Comments

We’re hearing from news reporters that the mayors praised the work of the people charged with managing the airport at today’s Airport Authority meeting. In response to requests:  “There has been a pattern of poor decisions and cozy relationships at the Airport that led to the creation of the fortress hub and produced the crisis […]

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by (RSS) Education | August 16th, 2012 3:00pm CDT | 4 Comments

From CNN: By Diane Ravitch Diane Ravitch is Research Professor of Education at New York University. Appointed by President Clinton, she served seven years on the National Assessment Governing Board which supervises the NAEP tests. She is the author of the best-selling book “The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing […]

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by (RSS) City of Memphis Government, Education, Shelby County government | August 15th, 2012 3:16pm CDT | Comments Off on What the Sales Tax Increase Means to Schools

In response to a question from us about the battle about sales tax increases, our favorite authority on school funding, Jimmie Covington, former Commercial Appeal reporter and now freelance journalist, offered his view of the taxes, the strategies, the law, and the possibility that Memphis children will have less spent on them.  Here’s what he […]

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                    Some Memphis officials can be forgiven for feeling like the guy at the bar whose drunk friend tries to defend him, throws a roundhouse punch, and knocks him flat. That’s the prevailing feeling about the 7-5 vote by the Shelby County Board of Commissioners to […]

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