Category Archives: map

(1249) Forces at work


Commerce may be the primary purpose of all cities, the thing that makes other aspects of life there possible.  What happens to this relationship when markets are free to gut punch housing seekers at will?  Inequity seems to be shaping life in Canadian cities and this is unfair and unreasonable when it bears comparison to an out of control event, a natural disaster.
Finding rental housing in Abbotsford like ‘searching for the Holy Grail without Indiana Jones’. City has Canada’s tightest rental market, but no sign it will improve this year
abbynews.com
An avalanche of money. An expert on how income disparities are reshaping Canada’s metropolitan areas zeroes in on Vancouver
theglobeandmail.com
image: Tyler Wilson via Flickr/CC

(1228) GTA income & equality update

For low income neighbourhoods to increase from 9% of a place to  51% of a place is a pretty crap reality.  Welcome to Brampton and Mississauga, once showpieces of growth and consumer choice.  Really, if you know anything about social conditions here the update to a 2015 United Way report will not surprise you.
Toronto region becoming more divided along income lines
thestar.com
And oh boy, the reports are never in short supply for long.  From late September: word about older citizens and others in food difficulty.
Who’s Hungry in Our City? 2017
North York Harvest & Daily Bread Food Bank
Not working isn’t the cause of all this.  In case you were wondering about 60% of those in poverty in Canada are in work.
Canadians for Public Justice 2017 Poverty Trends
cpj.ca

(1207) Hurricane Harvey


Climate change meets sprawl at the synthetic waterline along the Gulf of Mexico.  Perilous developments these days for the Houston Ship Channel and places like Rockport, Texas, seen in the image above from a Google Maps screen shot. Turning away from the spectacle of Hurricane Harvey’s wet trek into Texas is just about impossible.
A changing world asks questions about the way we build communities and operate their economies.  America’s fourth largest city is also a source of the fossil fuels that helped make sprawl and climate change possible.  Business as usual this time next year?
Boom town, flood town. Climate change will bring more frequent and fierce rainstorms to cities like Houston. But unchecked development remains a priority in the famously un-zoned city, creating short-term economic gains for some while increasing flood risks for everyone
texastribune.org
Hurricane Harvey poised to impact blacks in Texas, but no one is talking about it
dailykos.com
Hell and high water
propublica.org – this is a map/graphics rich feature from March 2016
See also:
(1067) Climate change pushes American public housing tenants

(1165) AI sees wealth & poverty from space


An artificial Intelligence application that processes US Census data and digital satellite photos is in existence.  Penny can crunch the physical and numerical life of your community and describe its status.  Yes, it is amazing.  Yes, it is a tad creepy.  Powerful stuff but what to do with this to better communities is the question to ask.
Try it out on St. Louis, MI
An AI that predicts a neighbourhood’s wealth from space
wired.com

(1083) 86 million acres


Enormous pressure will soon be placed on the world’s croplands as they are exchanged for human habitat.  Mind boggling stuff, even without consideration of climate change!
By 2030 megacities may devour more than 86 million acres of prime farmland
modernfarmer.com
An elegant monochrome map of the  world’s settlements.
German scientists made this excruciatingly detailed simulacrum of the “global urban footprint”
citylab.com

image: Duncan Rawlinson via Flickr/CC

(992) Building the poverty right in, or not

subway rendering 22
Earlier this year urban planning was said to be the hot new occupation.  Nice!  Especially if it means we’ll have more people paying attention to the built, spatial dimension of inequality and poverty?  Hope so.  No kids, it isn’t all groovy, inclusive charettes and pencil crayon renderings of LRTs.  Here’s a couple of recent pieces to help the young upstarts dig into the realities.

Mapping the city. How transit can fix access to jobs in Toronto
utoronto.ca

How urban design perpetuates racial inequality – and what we can do about it. Our cities weren’t created equal. But they don’t have to stay that way
fastcodesign.com

image: Chicago Transit Authority archives via Flickr/CC