Climate change meets sprawl at the synthetic water line along the Gulf of Mexico. Perilous developments these days for the Houston Ship Channel and places like Rockport, Texas, seen in an 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
Hell and high water
propublica.org – this is a map/graphics rich feature from March 2016
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.
Here is a link to an impressive online application that maps Canadian data about rental accommodation. Yes, things can get dire pretty when you include cost and quality parameters in searches. Tons of data.
We like optimism, yes we do. Infrastructure gets us going pretty good as well. To wit: an item that counsels us to look out to the sprawl for innovative approaches to badly needed infrastructure.
Why suburban tensions and inequality will drive infrastructure innovation
image: Garrett via Flickr/CC
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!
An elegant monochrome map of the world’s settlements.
German scientists made this excruciatingly detailed simulacrum of the “global urban footprint”
image: Duncan Rawlinson via Flickr/CC
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.
image: Chicago Transit Authority archives via Flickr/CC
New work from University of Toronto indicates a not inconsiderable peril for the health of the GTA’s children.
Toronto’s growing food insecurity crisis. With the latest research showing one in eight households in the city experiencing food insecurity, food banks are busier than ever
image: Toronto archives via Flickr/CC
Is job sprawl “the defining issue of our time”?
image: Daniel Oines via Flickr/CC
‘Vast social cleansing’ pushes tens of thousands of families out of London. Data shows that the numbers claiming free school meals has dropped by almost a third in some boroughs, suggesting areas are becoming preserves of the rich
image: D. Howard via Flickr/CC