Every day at The Overhead Wire we collect news about cities and send the links to our email list. At the end of the week we take some of the most popular stories and post them to Greater Greater Washington, a group blog similar to streets.mn that focuses on urban issues in the D.C. region. They are national links, sometimes entertaining and sometimes absurd, but hopefully useful.
Continued remote work won’t be sustainable: Research at Northwestern University that looked at 350 cities around the country found that location is crucial for innovation. Startups and other innovative companies work best when part of a larger diverse community and while individuals have seen productivity stay stable during the pandemic, it is in part because of previous innovation that is harder to foster away from team. (Hyejin Youn | Fast Company)
Cuyahoga River is burning again: The Cuyahoga River in Ohio reached a milestone in 2019 of becoming clean enough to eat fish caught in its waters. 50 years earlier, it caught fire eleven times between 1968 and 1969, generating public outrage and inspiring the Clean Water Act to limit water pollution. However, it caught fire again last week which should serve as a reminder of how environmental feats are quickly being undone. (Wes Siler | Outside Online)
Transit capital costs database created: To determine why capital costs for constructing rapid transit in the United States are so high, a team of researchers at the Marron Institute has put together a database of transit capital costs for the 11,000 km (6,835 miles) of projects that have been constructed since the 1990s in countries around the world. (Alon Levy | Pedestrian Observations)
Los Angeles could make transit free for riders: An internal LA Metro task force is looking to implement a pilot project that makes the transit network fare free. LA Metro’s CEO Phil Washington said at a recent board meeting that the pilot would target BIPOC communities and those most impacted by the pandemic. But while the idea is of interest for many advocates, the spectre of a 20% service cut also looms over the decision. (Joe Linton | Streetsblog LA)
The COVID City: The coronavirus pandemic has disproportionally affected communities based on their location and income. Not dense cities per say, but overcrowded and marginalized areas have been hardest hit as socioeconomic factors are determining contagion risk. As cities continue to be the hub for innovation, they will survive, but they must make efforts to support a healthy population through targeted interventions that help everyone. (Ian Goldin and Robert Muggah | Project Syndicate)
Quote of the Week
“Please, please, please pass this bill, and I’m going to go finish feeding my daughter.”
Californa Assemblymember Buffy Wicks on the Assembly floor fighting for a housing bill after being denied the ability to vote by proxy just one month after giving birth.
This week on the podcast, Professor Julian Agyeman of Tufts discusses the importance of Just Sustainabilities.