Category: Economics

Junket: Tossed & Found's storefront with 'road closed' barriers during Minnehaha Ave Road Reconstruction in 2015

On Hennepin: Good Ancestors Build Better Neighborhoods

For the sake of our collective wellbeing—and the just transition that those little hands are relying on us to deliver—we must allow ourselves to plan not for the past that has failed us, but instead, for a shared vision of a healed community in a thriving future.

A map of hennepin county shaded in pastel greens and purples

Does This Map Identify Systemic Bias in Property Valuation?

This editorial on disparities in property valuation in the New York Times is drawing attention and commentary, for good reason. The editorial finds nationwide, systemic valuation errors disproportionately affecting lower-value residential properties which shifts property-tax burdens towards those property-owners and away from higher-value residential property owners. Racial disparities in wealth and homeownership, and the persistent […]

A green line meant to resemble a graph in Excel has been drawn on a photo of stairs on the outside of a brick building painted in large blocks of red, yellow, and blue

Build More Housing: The Big Picture

Neighborhoods are designed, slowly and constantly, by the people who live in them. We make decisions about what gets built and who gets to use it or live in it through a network of community meetings, zoning boards, and city and state governments. In the process we create something we call “housing policy”. I have […]

No Time to Spare: Minnesota Needs a Green New Deal

The most contentious election season in living memory has come to a close as the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage across the US. Thanks to the Biden administration’s Covid Relief package and the approval of new coronavirus vaccines, an end to the pandemic is finally in sight. Biden’s administration will certainly have its hands full […]

Grocery Delivery 2021: Target Is The “Pay Less” Leader, but With a Delivery Fee

Last February, I wrote a shopping comparison report looking at in-store shopping at local grocery stores, including co-ops like Seward and national warehouses like Costco. As I wrote then, Costco was the winner-winner five dollar chicken dinner. It’s been a year, and I apologize for not writing as frequently. The global pandemic has really taken […]

Minneapolis skyline in fog, black and white

Five Takeaways from 41 Years of Twin Cities Housing Development

Everybody knows the Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) metropolitan area is building new housing. It’s been evident for years in the disappearing parking lots of the Mill District and the North Loop, the new windows on old Lowertown warehouses, and the profusion of mid-rises that increasingly characterize Uptown and Dinkytown. But almost nobody has the free time […]

Why Minneapolis needs a Land Value Tax

This image shows a mostly undeveloped parking lot, occupying a full block of prime real estate in the heart of downtown Minneapolis. Why does this lot remain underdeveloped? The owner of the land could increase their income drastically if they developed the land to its fullest potential. Additionally, the city as a whole would gain […]

Xcel Wind Blade Assembly

Building New Wind Power is Cheaper Than Any Other Power Source

Electricity prices are not directly related to creating safer streets for all, but they are related to our interests in housing and the environment. It is important to recognize some of the turning points in the history of sustainable energy. One of those turning points happened just last year, when onshore wind power (like that […]

Why a Major Outer-suburban Real Estate Downturn is Imminent

I believe the stage is set for large, outer-suburban houses to decline drastically in value. This will likely result in abandonment or subdivision into multiple units before mortgages are paid off. In the long-term future, many outer-suburban homeowners will probably foreclose, if the taxpayer doesn’t bail them out. There are many factors predictive of this […]