The Supreme Court will issue an opinion in the Water Wars case between Georgia and Florida as early as May 21st. When the two states made their arguments in January, several justices appeared sympathetic to Florida. Meanwhile, in a brief on the matter, Atlanta asserted that the Supreme Court shouldn’t even attempt to help Florida because the benefits of the environment are often too vague to be valued.
The Georgia Supreme Court recently seemed to endorse the idea that sidewalks are necessary to promote the health and safety of residents. Well, kind of. At the very least, the Court’s ruling highlights the necessity of adopting urban planning policies that are focused less on cars and more on the well-being of residents.
Buckhead has sometimes been referred to as the Jewel of Atlanta, though this title is severely threatened by its increasingly underwhelming user experience. Its lack of vibrancy, identity, and walkability make the neighborhood a shining example of poor urban design and undercut its ability to attract residents and businesses. In its attempt to remain relevant, Buckhead should look to Miami’s Brickell neighborhood, Virginia’s Tyson’s Corner, and Atlanta’s Midtown neighborhood.
While Atlanta is experiencing a wetter-than-average year, northern Georgia is experiencing severe to extreme drought conditions. This is just one example of how conditions in one part of the state may not be indicative of the larger local or regional climate. The new SustainAtlanta Weather+Climate page is dedicated to giving readers a better understanding of how the day-to-day weather fits into the overall regional climate picture.
The first half of 2017 was far and away the hottest such time period of any year in 123 years of record keeping in the Southeast. Don’t let a lack of heat waves or a senator with a snowball deflect from the overwhelming evidence of a global and regional warming trend.
In just six years Atlanta has added half the number of people it lost during the great urban exodus of the 1950’s-1980’s. Between 2015 and 2016, Atlanta was one of the fastest growing cities in the metro area and one of the fastest growing large cities in the country.
Pro-helmet and anti-helmet advocates both make compelling arguments in the quest to make cycling safer. While better urban design principles would fundamentally solve the safety problem, courts may find that cyclists have a duty to wear a helmet.
Cities are in love with small coffee shops, artisan burger shops, and boutique clothing stores. The only thing they like more is taking people’s property and converting it to those types of businesses. This is, of course, a bit of hyperbole, though many would make that statement with much more sincerity. A bill passed by the Georgia Legislature would allow local governments to condemn blighted property and sell it to developers. It’s not a bad idea.
A bill in the Georgia Legislature would allow property owners to swap “No Trespassing” signs for purple lines to ward off trespassing. Without a widespread campaign to educate the public, the use of such an arbitrary symbol could make criminals out of innocent hikers and outdoorsmen.
Congress looks to overturn an Obama-era rule designed to track racial discrepancies in access to affordable housing by gutting federal funding for critical GIS data. The American Association of Geographers has taken a strong stance saying these actions “…could have far-reaching consequences on federally-sponsored research on racial discrimination, including on federal human health programs; census issues; education programs, including services for children; Department of Justice programs; and other critical programs.”