David Montgomery

David Montgomery

David Montgomery is a data visualization journalist at CityLab.

An animated world map shows dramatic changes in land use from 1700 to 2000.

How 300 Years of Urbanization and Farming Transformed the Planet

Three centuries ago, humans were intensely using just around 5 percent of the Earth’s land. Now, it’s almost half.

Sears store closures, in square feet.

The 2018 Retail Apocalypse, in 6 Charts and a Map

Store closures are up as online shopping grows—but other measures suggest brick-and-mortar retail is still doing OK.

A photo of Andrew Field, the owner of Rockaway Taco, looking out from his store in the Rockaway Beach neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York.

Tacos and Transit: Rate Your City

From taco-rich San Diego to the tortilla wastelands of Boston, we asked you to grade U.S. cities on two critical metrics: Mexican food and public transportation.

Long Island City, Queens residents in a park.

What New Yorkers Really Think of Amazon HQ2

More than half of them welcome the tech giant, according to a Quinnipiac poll. But support varies by borough, and race.

Mike Espy and Cindy Hyde-Smith at a debate.

In Mississippi Senate Race, the Suburbs Won’t Save Democrat Mike Espy

Democrats hoping to pull off an upset in Mississippi’s U.S. Senate race have to struggle against the state’s unusually small urban and suburban population.

A category for each congressional district by density, on a spectrum from rural to urban.

CityLab’s Congressional Density Index

A new way to categorize all 435 U.S. congressional districts by their density, on a spectrum from rural to urban.

Suburban Voters Gave Democrats Their House Majority

Predominantly suburban congressional districts, once closely divided, are now twice as likely to be represented by a Democrat than by a Republican.

Density Will Affect Who Controls State Legislatures, Too

Even at the state level, suburbs are the battlegrounds in politics this year. Take Minnesota.

The 2010 Midterm Wave Rewrote America’s Political Geography. Will 2018 Do It Again?

In 2010, Republicans established a new normal by dominating rural areas. Now, CityLab’s analysis shows it’s the suburbs that are up for grabs.

Congressman Dan Donovan talks to supporters.

In These Outlier Congressional Districts, Density Doesn’t Equal Democrats

Across the U.S., denser districts in Congress tend to be more Democratic, and sparser ones more Republican. But there are a few exceptions with their own personalities, from Staten Island to Bernie Sanders land.

Congressional districts, by density.

How the Suburbs Will Swing the Midterm Election

Close congressional races this November will likely hinge on the moods of suburban voters, a new CityLab analysis finds.

Who Owns a Home in America, in 12 Charts

Many homeownership trends have remained largely the same since 1960—with a few noteworthy shifts.

The U.S. Steel Edgar Thomson steel plant

Environmentalists by Necessity

In the old steel town of Braddock, Pennsylvania, the toxic footprint is emblematic of what it means to suffer environmental injustice in the U.S. And nobody invested in the town’s future can afford to ignore it.

Visualizing the Hidden ‘Logic’ of Cities

Some cities’ roads follow regimented grids. Others twist and turn. See it all on one chart.

A photo shows a London Underground sign.

Getting a Bird’s Eye View of the World’s Subway Systems

Online artists are tracing transit lines onto aerial photos, offering a new way to visualize an often hidden mode of transit.

People watch a fireworks show at night.

The Spike in Air Pollution From July 4 Fireworks, Visualized

There will be more than 16,000 fireworks displays across the U.S. this Fourth of July—enough to register a dramatic (if temporary) effect on air quality.

Where Will the Migrant Kids Go?

After the executive order signed by the Trump administration, the situation for kids and families detained at the border is even more uncertain than it was before. But here are some scenarios.

Customers leave a branch of California National Bank of Los Angeles, one day after the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation closed CalNational and eight smaller related banks, in Los Angeles, Saturday, Oct. 31, 2009.

The Tax on Black and Brown Customers When Dealing With Community Banks

According to a new study from New America, African Americans and Latinx incur more bank account costs and fees than whites even when dealing with small financial institutions.

D.C. Voted on Higher Wages for Tipped Workers. Here’s What Happened.

Support for the controversial ballot measure, which will raise the minimum wage on tipped employees, fell on familiar race and class lines.