Airbnb’s Sublet Service Would Be A Welcome Addition To The Housing Market

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

Airbnb—an online platform better known for connecting travelers with vacated homes over short stays—is considering an expansion into the temporary sublet market. Although the company has provided subletting services since 2011, it recently hired McKinsey & Co. to research the market more, hoping to grow and compete with Craigslist’s “sublets/temporary” section. The company thus seems to recognize its evolving role, from a vacation service into an option for long-term apartment seekers, and the millions of freelancers and employees who temporarily locate in U.S.… Read more

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miami beach

How Far Can Miami’s Beach Development Spread?

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

When people think of Miami’s beach culture, they likely focus on the three miles of shoreline along the heart of Miami Beach. What they may not realize is that this culture is spreading north, to previously suburban areas like Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale. This new growth results from the same secret sauce that has bolstered South Florida at large. These once-mild coastal townships are allowing new people, crafting model public spaces, funding forward-thinking infrastructure, and most importantly, letting builders build. The result is a fast-spreading, vertical brand of urbanism that has become the region’s trademark, and turned it into an ever-growing global destination…[read the rest at Forbes]… Read more

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houston housing

Houston Builder Combines Two Key Housing Types: Micro-Units And Condo Hotels

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

In the fall of 2015, developer Novel Creative Development LLC announced that it would build Ivy Lofts, the nation’s largest micro-unit condo project, in Houston. It appears, however, that the company overestimated demand in the city for these tiny apartments, which have been touted as a key to making U.S. cities affordable. The company has responded by converting some of the building’s unsold units into condo hotels. Rather than a failure, then, Novel’s building could be quite innovative, combining two building types that are crucial to producing smaller, more flexible and more centrally-located housing in urban America…[read the rest at Forbes]… Read more

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A Private Proposal To Solve Chicago’s Freight Rail Bottleneck

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

As the Midwest’s most important economic hub, Chicago is naturally the focal point for much rail traffic. Both Amtrak and Metra, a regional rail transit authority, run through the city, as do six of the nation’s seven largest freight railroads. These trains carry goods between America’s East and West coasts, and between Canada and the U.S. South, with Chicago handling roughly 25% of nationwide rail traffic. This has created massive bottlenecks, with trains sometimes taking days to get through the city. Every level of government—federal, state, regional and local—has tried addressing the problem.… Read more

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The Airbnb Model May Come To Kitchen Rentals

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

Charlottesville, VA–The sharing economy, best known for spawning Airbnb and Uber, is encroaching into the world’s kitchens. There are now various services that bring chefs into the private kitchens of eaters, bring eaters into the private kitchens of chefs, or match large groups together for shared meals. This budding industry may soon add a new wrinkle: kitchen rental space for food entrepreneurs. One service, defined as “the Airbnb for kitchens,” is being proposed by an extremely small start-up company called The Kitchen Network…[read the rest at Forbes]… Read more

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Nola waterfront

America’s Progressive Developers–Sean Cummings and Steve Dumez

[Originally published by Market Urbanism]

 

[part of an MU series on America’s Progressive Developers]

 

New Orleans, LA–In recent decades, many U.S. cities have altered their downtown waterfronts. While proximity to water was what first enabled their industrial growth, this meant that their shorelines were long cut off from the public. Once residential quality of life became more of a factor, cities like Portland, Baltimore, and New York City transformed these spaces into parks and promenades.

But New Orleans has remained behind the curve. The city famously meanders along the Mississippi River in the shape of a crescent, hence its nickname.… Read more

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How Tinder Is Changing The Urban Bar Scene

[Originally published by Forbes]

 

Oklahoma City, OK–The way men and women meet nowadays is totally different than before. It used to be that if a guy saw an attractive woman, he’d approach her–unaware of whether she was even single, much less interested–and then brace himself for a humiliating rejection. Now both parties just use internet apps like Tinder, Bumble, and Match.com, which streamline the vetting and meeting process. But this hasn’t kept bars–with their social lubricant of alcohol–from remaining the places where prospective couples meet. The question is how such dating shifts have altered bars’ business and social models.… Read more

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In the Birthplace of Jazz, Noise Complaints Get Louder

[Originally printed in Governing Magazine]

 

New Orleans, LA–New Orleans is the birthplace of jazz. It’s also where the blues and so many other genres have been refined. It still swarms with buskers — street performers — random parades and live music bars. But recently tension has grown between those who make the music and those living near it. Although the city’s initial response was to tamp down on the noise, it has since launched an educational campaign called Sound Check to reduce complaints while letting the music play on.… Read more

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brickell

Skyscraper Paradise — Miami’s Brickell Should Be Urban America’s Future

[Originally published by National Review]

 

Miami — As someone who has visited every major U.S. city, I can attest that there isn’t another neighborhood quite like Miami’s Brickell. The 1.19-square-mile area south of downtown is the sort of gleaming overnight skyscraper zone that just isn’t built anymore in America. Starting as a low-slung neighborhood, it grew to become what it now is thanks to the city’s tolerance of unfettered growth. And rather than bringing Armageddon, as critics of rapid urban development might suspect, Brickell has become an economic powerhouse and an urban destination.… Read more

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

America’s Progressive Developers–Oliver Kuttner

[Originally published by Market Urbanism]

 

[part of an MU series on America’s Progressive Developers]

Charlottesville, VA

Building new structures in historic downtown areas can be tricky for developers. Especially in small towns, residents cherish the existing fabric of small older buildings, and dislike incoming ones that blow up this scale. Meanwhile developers, looking to reach financial viability, tend towards constructing buildings that are large, simple and cheap. But as I learned last December while spending Christmas in my hometown of Charlottesville, VA, there is a largely unrealized way that developers can do both. … Read more

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