urban revitalization

10 Stories

Chicago Is Selling Vacant Lots for $1

But only to their neighbors

(Newser) - Even Detroit doesn't have city real estate cheaper than this. Chicago is now offering vacant lots for just a buck each, NPR reports. But before you start dreaming of your new life as a Windy City land speculator, you should know there's a catch: You have to... More »

Cleveland Eyes Philly's Immigrant-Driven Renewal

As residents flee, Cleveland mulls Philly-like policies

(Newser) - In 2000, Philadelphia looked a lot like Cleveland: Surging crime, empty houses, a sliding population. Since then, a tide of immigrants has spurred entrepreneurship, filled high-tech jobs, and put Philly on course for its first population increase in 60 years. Now Ohioans hope to do the same, but they must... More »

Prince Charles' Eco-Fund Whacked by Credit Crunch

Investor abandons prince's fund for urban regeneration

(Newser) - Prince Charles' dreams of eco-friendly urban regeneration have been shattered by the credit crisis, the Daily Telegraph reports. A major Middle Eastern investor has pulled out of a $1 billion property fund the prince planned to use to replicate the sustainable eco-village Poundbury, which he launched in Dorset. Supporters are... More »

McMansion Era May Be Over

Strapped Americans now prefer cozier homes

(Newser) - As strapped Americans develop a conscience and, er, sense of taste about living, the practice of razing existing homes to make way for super-size replacements is slowing, reports the Christian Science Monitor. Languid McMansion sales have brought quiet back to historic neighborhoods, drowned out for years by bulldozers and upset... More »

Cities Fight Urban Blight With Free College Tuition

'Promise Communities' are tried across the country

(Newser) - Cities on the decline across the country are testing a new strategy to stem urban decline: Families who buy homes in town get their kids college tuition paid in full. These "promise communities"—about 80 in all—seek to attract new residents and keep upwardly-mobile city dwellers from... More »

Middle Class America Moves Downtown

Shift could spark suburban slums, experts fear

(Newser) - Middle class Americans are moving back downtown, pushing out minority groups and reversing the 20th century trend of "white flight," Alan Ehrenhalt writes in the New Republic. Why the shift? Downtown areas are safer, industries have moved out, and rising fuel prices make suburban commutes less attractive. "... More »

Rat's Nest of Urban Politics Behind Philly's 'Big Stall'

Many demolitions, huge budget, no benefits

(Newser) - Lamenting the lack of progress in another urban redevelopment project, Karen Heller takes aim at the Pennsylvania Convention Center expansion in the Philadelphia Inquirer. The Center expansion has been in the works since 1993, spurring numerous building demolitions, but few new constructions: in short, North Broad Street, advertised as a... More »

Motown Crops Spring From Decay

Charity makes dent with farms in desolate Detroit neighborhoods

(Newser) - An ambitious charity thinks it can turn Detroit’s most desolate neighborhoods into bustling farming utopias. The group, dubbed Urban Farming, grows vegetables on vacant land throughout the city, then gives them out for free to local residents, the BBC reports. Parts of Motor City have been transformed by its... More »

Nazi Architect's Son Has His Own Designs

Father's shadow hasn't kept Albert Speer from worldwide impact

(Newser) - It’s hard to make a name for yourself when you share a name with your father, harder when the father was a famous Nazi architect and friend of Hitler. Urban planner Albert Speer constantly battles the association, keeping a low profile, and, though he has made his mark worldwide,... More »

Downtown LA Finally 'Happens'

Urbanites flock to new real estate hot spot

(Newser) - The clutter of buildings known as "downtown LA" is morphing from a nightly ghost town into a hip 'hood, the Washington Post reports. Recent laws have turned offices into lofts, and attracted hipsters to enjoy the high ceilings and roof parties. Artists are hightailing out as six-figure professionals come... More »

10 Stories