Are You a Millennial? Fort Myers Wants You to Move Downtown

Downtown Fort Myers, also known as The River District (Andrew West / The News-Press)
Fort Myers officials are willing to rewrite the law books to make shopping, dining and living around downtown more attractive to millennials. Higher density around downtown means more buildings for urban housing, retail and coffee shops. The city’s goal seems simple: diversify the economy, create a walkable environment and establish a hub of activity. Then, theoretically, millennials will come. Read more... Read more

Buffalo’s Zoning Code Steps Into the 21st Century

Buffalo, New York (Derek Gee/Buffalo News)
The Buffalo Green Code unanimously passed the Common Council, ushering in the first overhaul of the city code in 63 years. City planning will move from a suburban model of development to one considered progressively urban in its approach to green and smart-growth principles. Read more... Read more

Density Is at the Center of San Diego Climate Fight

San Diego skyline (Credit: Nserrano)
San Diego environmentalists and urbanists are sounding the alarm. They say if the city doesn’t take steps to increase density in its inner-core neighborhoods it won’t be on track to accomplish its climate goals. The city says the advocates are too focused on land use and are ignoring the many other climate mitigation strategies it has in play. Read more... Read more

The New American Suburb: Diverse, Dense, and Booming

Downtown Naperville, Illinois, an example of denser suburban development (Credit: Ian Freimuth / Flickr)
American suburbs are far from a static set of cookie-cutter housing developments. But a forthcoming new report, Demographic Strategies for Real Estate, suggests that this archetypical part of the American landscape is in for some massive changes over the next decade that will reshape planning, land-use, and the real estate market. Read more... Read more

Downtown as a Template for Miami’s Future

Miami's Metrorail train in downtown Miami, Florida. (Reuters/Joe Skipper)
People in Miami love their cars, and for good reason: it’s not exactly one of the most walkable large cities in the U.S. And yet there are signs Miami is trading in its decades of auto-centric urban design for a denser, more pedestrian-friendly model. Downtown Miami is leading the charge into that walkable future. Read more... Read more

We Need Code Reform: How Do We Get There?

Petosky, Michigan (Source: CNU Public Square)
We know that traditional zoning and development codes can be harmful to building strong, prosperous communities. So why has progress been so slow—why do rules that actively hinder the development that we say we want persist in most of our cities and villages? The Michigan Municipal League recently hosted a workshop that connected five Michigan cities with a team of national development code-writing experts convened by Congress for the New Urbanism to dig into this question. Read more... Read more

To End the Affordable Housing Crisis, Washington Needs to Legalize Main Street

Establishing by-right development and streamlining local permitting processes will allow developers to respond nimbly to market demands and will relieve the “guilty until proven innocent” status of new building development, which depresses construction starts across the country by delaying and inhibiting housing projects. Read more... Read more
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