Category Archives: link

(1281) Edge City


As part of the great collective cultural effort to sum it all up in the prelude to the Millennium we at this blog certainly remember Joel Garreau’s book Edge City: Life On the New Frontier with an affectionate sense of its importance.  It certainly remains recommended reading for anyone trying to understand North American community building.  It’s a layered pleasure then to come across a long feature on Citylab that checks in with Garreau on where cities, edge and otherwise, are a quarter century on from his popular opus.
Return to Edge City. It was one of the most talked-about urbanist books, and ideas, a generation ago. What ever happened to Joel Garreau’s concept of the “edge city”?
citylab.com
image: J. Sibiga Photography via Flickr/CC

(1279) Slate series


A series in Slate does the job working over the downward tilt in fortune for American suburban living.  Worth a visit.  I suppose we Ontarians are looking to protect ourselves from this kind of socioeconomic illness how?
By electing Doug Ford premier?

Hope not.

More families feel insecure. That’s because they are.
In the suburbs, income is more volatile, and you’re more vulnerable
slate.com  Suburban Slide

image: Tomovox via Flickr/CC

(1276) Costly commutes for Finns

Interesting in a not-very-nice way: Finns discover their relationship to the national poverty line can be directly related to their transportation options.  The further from work the lower the income.  With its winter weather and not dissimilar economy Canadians might like to note the ongoing work cited in this article.  As in Toronto and Atlanta, so in Helsinki?
Finns falling below poverty line due to transport costs
helsinkitimes.fi
image: Jeff E. via Flickr/CC

(1274) Words from Ontario basic income trial


Ontario’s basic income pilot has begun to produce some observations and anecdotes.  A thorough, high level analysis will need to be done at the conclusion of the three-year, three-community trial but expectations are high.  The pilot project is not quite a full-on basic income, more of a test apparatus designed to gather evidence of what actually happens in the lives of a recipient.
Yes, there is still a fair bit of naysaying and skepticism out there.  Some of it from surprising directions like a major anti-poverty activist here in Ontario and from union figures.  Another hurdle may be the upcoming provincial election.  All kinds of right wing critters and neoliberal reactionaries are looking for power, for gravy trains to stop, as it were.  The pilot project may be an early target in the election and for whoever gets into the premier’s office.  In the meantime, words from the participants are appropriate.
From ‘barely surviving’ to thriving: Ontario basic income recipients report less stress, better health. The three-year pilot project, which began last summer, is testing whether no-strings-attached cash support can boost health, education and housing for people living in poverty
thestar.com
image: Hefin Owen via Flickr/CC

(1273) A sharper Canada


Note to Canada: sharpen your game up a little.
This first piece might go some way to explaining the whacky prices for real estate in Vancouver and Toronto.  Ouch!
How Canada became an offshore destination for ‘snow washing’. The country’s opaque jurisdictions allow owners of private companies to remain anonymous and the firms to remain in the shadows
theguardian.com
Do corporate officers really need us to hand them $200m worth of deductions for their entertainment expenses every year?  Nope.  And that’s just for starters, a handful of loopholes are costing the public vast sums.
These tax loopholes for the rich cost Canada billions. Here’s how we could invest that money instead. What could Canada do with $12 billion lost to tax loopholes exploited by corporations and wealthy elites?
pressprogress.ca
image: Alex Indigo via Flickr/CC

(1272) The New Urban Crisis [Book review]

The New Urban Crisis.  How Our Cities Are Increasing Inequality, Deepening Segregation, and Failing the Middle Class – and What We Can Do About It
Richard Florida
2017: Basic Books, NY
310 pages
Urban crisis is also suburban crisis.  What is bad for one is bad for the other, if in different ways.  For Florida’s take on all this we refer you to chapter eight of his most recent book.  This chapter functions as a data-supported handbook to the sprawl zones.  In an era of what he calls winner-take-all urbanism staged by and for the so-called creative class, well, the further out you go it seems the deeper the doo-doo.  Please read.
The new suburban crisis
citylab.com