Author Archives: zeromeanerror

Rent distributions in American’s urban areas

At City Observatory, Daniel Kay Hertz convincingly demonstrates that affordability can’t always be measured using aggregate figures, like median home value: For an illustration of this problem, imagine two neighborhoods. In both places, the median home costs $300,000. But in the first neighborhood, every home … Continue reading

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Can we stop using the word “subsidy”?

Here are two sub-headlines in a Streetsblog post about recent transportation referendums: Seattle’s property tax increase to fund walking, biking, and transit Voters have spoken and they decided to enact Move Seattle, the $900 million property tax levy for transportation. … Continue reading

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Housing options at the census-defined urban area level

Wonkblog ran a great little post yesterday where they looked at the distribution of housing options (suburban-style SFR, rowhouse, multifamily by number of units, etc) in American cities. Here’s what their chart looks like: One potential problem here is that cities have … Continue reading

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Interactive graph: Population density distributions

Land use twitter has been on a population density kick recently. These exchanges motivated me to put together an interactive graph of population density distributions, something I’ve been meaning to do for a while. (Many thanks to @woolie and this blog post, … Continue reading

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No, Europe doesn’t spend 5 percent of GDP on infrastructure

Over the past week, a number of Very Serious People have told us that 5 percent of GDP in “Europe” goes towards “infrastructure”. Here’s Bill DeBlasio at the NYT: Meanwhile, the rest of the world races ahead. Europe spends 5 percent of … Continue reading

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A note on international comparisons

Everyone is using yesterday’s Amtrak disaster to make a point about US infrastructure spending (I, II, III, IV, etc). They’re right, mostly: the US should absolutely spend more on roads and bridges and trains, if for no other reason than the government … Continue reading

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“Supply-side” urbanism: A misnomer

Supply-side economics — the notion that tax cuts for the rich pay for themselves via increased growth — is a kind of punching bag for progressives, and rightly so. Our economic experiment in the 80s was at best a mild boon for growth, and at … Continue reading

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