(1136) Florida calls crisis

Urban studies theorist Richard Florida turns his attention in this item to the divergent prospects of inner suburbs and the sprawl beyond them.  Yikes!
Inside the new suburban crisis. Once the key driver of the American dream, the suburbs have reached the end of a long era of cheap growth. Now their advantages to economic mobility have nearly disappeared
citylab.com
image: houston, i am the problem via Flickr/CC

(1135) Cycling along the poverty line

This is a moving feature on the role a bicycle can play for lower income folks living in the sprawl.  Los Angeles is the place but we know for a fact lives like this are found in Canadian communities as well.
How low income cyclists go unnoticed. There really is a world where people pedal to work, use bikes for everyday transportation and by riding, form close communities of friends and neighbors – and it exists right in your town
bicycling.com
image: bedrocan via Flickr/CC

(1134) BC election 2017


Election time in British Columbia sees suburban issues, and mixed feelings, in the foreground.
Forget Vancouver, BC’s future will be decided by the suburbs. With big city problems creeping into the land of cul-de-sacs and single-family homes, suburban swing ridings are set to determine the outcome of the provincial election
vanmag.com

Some insight from recent US experience?

Environment as politics. New drawings of the relations between residential density and voting behaviour
placesjournal.org
image: Concert Properties via Flickr/CC

(1133) Car town


Here in the Greater Toronto Area it feels like the real estate bubble will never burst.  Prices swell and then swell some more.  Equity flows – as if up through the very drains in the monster home basements – to enrich the fortunate homeowner.
An unavoidable parallel to this frenzy is found in automotive finance.  Where you have sprawl, you have cars, natch.
Is there an auto bubble on the horizon?
macleans.ca
Canadians getting lured onto auto debt treadmill by signing on to long term car loans
financialpost.com
What comes after the auto bubble?
frontiergroup.org
What’s happening with subprime auto loans?
visualcapitalist.com
‘Deep subprime’ auto loans are surging
bloomberg.com
image: Heather Philips via Flickr/CC

(1129) May Day: pizzas & pink slips


May Day perhaps offers us a moment or two for thinking about the future of work and wages in years to come.
Also, robots.
The next big thing in construction robotics is building big.
Automation has revolutionized factory work. Now researchers have their sights set on construction
cbc.ca/news
Domino’s turns to robots to deliver pizza
robotics.news
Where machines could replace humans – and where they can’t (yet)
mckinsey.com

(1128) Discount grocery pay


Discount grocery stores exemplify the struggle to get by – on both sides of the cash register.

We should be paid a living wage’. Discount grocery store workers speak out against management, unions.  Food Basics say company and unions are not fighting enough for their rights
cbc.ca/news

A podcast with author Ellen Rupel Shell about the implications of low end retail.

The high cost of buying ‘cheap’
npr.org (2009 podcast 29:43)

image: rene_beignet via Flickr/CC

(1127) Aging in it


Three items to help us gather some thoughts around the growth in the number of elderly persons occurring now in North America.  How will the built environment affect the cognition and emotional life of seniors?
The isolation of aging in an auto-oriented place
strongtowns.org
No place to grow old. How Canadian suburbs can become age-friendly
irrp.org (26-page .pdf)
What helps Minnesota seniors age in place?
U researcher has some clues. It’s the little things
like benches and safe crosswalks
startribune.com
Who will buy Baby Boomers’ homes?
citylab.com
Want to stop your brain from getting old?
Live in a walkable neighbourhood
fastcompany.com
image: Tasha Lutek via Flickr/CC