Category Archives: Urban Development

Gentrification in Frenchtown: A Nuanced Perspective

By Jordan Greer Gentrification has been contentious since British sociologist Ruth Rich coined the word in the 1960s. Rich used the term to describe the process of wealthy citizens, landlords, and developers moving into British working class neighborhoods and renovating … Continue reading

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Government Consolidation Rarely Lives Up to Promises

By Matt Kelly Government consolidation is an often-touted solution to economic and social problems in American cities. Several initiatives to combine local governments  have resulted in conjoined regional governments, including Indianapolis-Marion County (IN), Athens-Clarke County (GA), and Jacksonville-Duval County (FL). … Continue reading

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Study Finds Growth Management Laws Reduce Housing Affordability

by Matt Kelly A new study by Cato Institute Senior Fellow Randal O’Toole explores the history and effects of growth management in the United States. Growth-management laws, according to O’Toole, “restrict rural development in order to force most growth into … Continue reading

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New Study Examines Spillover Effects of Real Estate Owned Properties

Since the housing market collapse, banks have repossessed large numbers of homes. These REO or real estate owned properties are often vacant and rundown and can lower the values of nearby residences. While research confirms this spillover effect of REOs … Continue reading

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Tax Increment Financing Has Unclear Effects

By Casey Barr Originally used in California in 1952, TIF is the most widely utilized type of economic development program in the nation, with 49 states and the District of Columbia currently authorize its use. Arizona is the only state that … Continue reading

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Decision-making in a Community Redevelopment Agency

By Casey Barr As discussed in a previous blog post, Community Redevelopment Agencies (CRAs) are a form of special district government that funds local redevelopment projects with taxpayer subsidies. But how are spending and organizational decisions made in a CRA? (Source: … Continue reading

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New Report Analyzes Tallahassee’s Permitting Process

By Matt Kelly An efficient regulatory process is essential to the business development strategies of cities like Tallahassee, Florida. Regulations that are too cumbersome or unnecessary increase the cost of doing business without serving the public interest. The growth and … Continue reading

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Community Redevelopment Agencies

By Casey Barr Local governments face the perennial dilemma of obtaining money to fund community redevelopment projects. Requesting state or federal funds can be an arduous bureaucratic process, and these funds are often awarded to larger, more prominent cities, ignoring … Continue reading

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Special District Spending Priorities and Political Entrepreneurship

By Matt Kelly and Tyler Worthington Special districts are small local governments created by state statute or local ordinance to fulfill a particular purpose in a specified geographic area. Some special districts control the mosquito population in an area, while … Continue reading

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Microfinancing: Good for the Poor?

By Logan Shewmaker Many businesses start on loans. Traditionally, the loan process works by allowing a business owner or individual to approach a bank, receive the money upfront, and then pay back the amount loaned out over a period of … Continue reading

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