New York State’s opening bid to Amazon to locate the tech giant’s second headquarters in Long Island City, Queens, was bigger than we initially knew. How much? $800 million more in incentives and even an offer to pay part of the salaries of some Amazon employees. … [Read more...] about New York wanted Amazon so bad it was willing to pay part of its employees’ salaries
Afridi says she sees the same kind of backlash playing out when it comes to smaller projects as well. It’s a common response to developers that come into a community without listening to or accommodating locals’ concerns, both in American cities and abroad. There have been other high-profile victories in recent years: In Berlin, activists fought against Google’s attempt to turn an old electric company building into a tech incubator, successfully convincing the tech giant to abandon the development in fall 2018. At the same time, some developers have managed to find middle ground with activists who have fought for their voices to be heard. For example, the developers behind the Kingsbridge project in the Bronx, which aims to transform an old armory into an ice skating complex, reached an agreement with community groups in 2014 that included providing free skate time for local kids and 50,000 square feet of community space. … [Read more...] about The war against Amazon was a war for cities–and cities won
Seven hundred of the buildings’ 2,300 units will be affordable for very low-income New Yorkers–couples must make less than $29,000 per year to be eligible for a $640 per month one-bedroom. The park is the other big consolation for the neighborhood. Ultimately, the company will have spent more than $50 million on building Domino Park, which will open ahead of most of the development. The developers have carefully put in a public road between the still-to-be-built residential towers and the park, so it feels more accessible to the neighborhood–a key critique they heard during feedback sessions. While the decision to turn some of the land into a road might not be the most obvious design feature of the park, it is perhaps the most crucial one. … [Read more...] about Can NYC’s next big park recapture the magic of the High Line?
The chance meeting led to an ongoing rapport, and a similar realized frustration about the evolution of urban space in and around Cambridge, Massachusetts, where MIT is based. For its part, the city of Cambridge has launched a “Vacant Storefront Initiative,” and an associated database and interactive map that catalogues empty storefronts in the municipality; the database currently lists 72 addresses of varying lease status. Cambridge isn’t alone; cities across the country have experienced increased vacancies in brick-and-mortar stores over the years. (In 2018, The Atlantic called the empty storefronts in New York “a dark omen for the future of cities,” citing rent hikes disproportionate to the growth of retail sales, the proliferation of online shopping, and the migration of businesses selling durable, nonperishable goods to the online sector.) “It was frustrating to see the city become muted,” says Lee. “We started to dream about what … [Read more...] about Want to get rid of vacant storefronts? Let artists take over
But things get even more interesting when you zoom in. The map becomes more detailed the closer you get, and since the census data is measured on a tract-by-tract basis, it’s possible to get a very compelling look at how specific cities and neighborhoods have changed over the 2010s. … [Read more...] about This map stunningly visualizes a decade of U.S. population growth, from 2010-2019