Feargus O'Sullivan

Feargus O'Sullivan

Feargus O'Sullivan is a contributing writer to CityLab, covering Europe. His writing focuses on housing, gentrification and social change, infrastructure, urban policy, and national cultures. He has previously contributed to The Guardian, The Times, The Financial Times, and Next City, among other publications.

Alone Together, in Community Resilience

Portable pantries. Saucepan protests. Small-space dance routines. The best coronavirus community efforts use social distancing as an asset, not an obstacle.

photo: a TGV train in Avignon, France

To Fight a Fast-Moving Pandemic, Get a Faster Hospital

To move Covid-19 patients from the hardest-hit areas, authorities in France turned one of the nation’s famous TGV trains into a very fast ambulance.

Why Norway Is Banning its Residents From Their Own Vacation Homes

Don’t let rural hospitals get overrun with Covid-19 cases just to enjoy your summer house, the government warns.

photo: Parisians walk along the Seine on Sunday, one day after Paris closed cafes and restaurants.

Virus #Irresponsables Put France on Lockdown

After Parisians post pictures from the city’s parks, the government calls for a countrywide lockdown to slow the spread of Covid-19 infections.

photo: A commuter, wearing a protective face mask, waits on the platform for a Milan Metro subway train in Milan, Italy,

Europe Is Canceled

As Covid-19 cases continue to climb, the U.K and E.U. are banning events, closing schools, and sealing borders to slow the spread of the virus.

London’s Trees Are Saving the City Billions

Shady trees mean less air conditioning and increased worker productivity in the summer months.

photo: strollers in Vienna

Is Vienna Really All That Livable? Depends on Where You Look.

A new report questions the methods used by the Economist Intelligence Unit to rank global cities, saying that environmental justice issues can get ignored.

Why Amsterdam May Clamp Down on Weed and Sex Work

Proposals to ban cannabis for tourists and relocate the red-light district would dramatically reshape the city’s anything-goes image.

photo: bicyclists in Paris during a transit strike in December.

Paris Mayor: It's Time for a '15-Minute City'

In her re-election campaign, Mayor Anne Hidalgo says that every Paris resident should be able to meet their essential needs within a short walk or bike ride.

Britain’s Bold Plan for High-Speed Rail

Faster north-south train service around London could decrease reliance on cars and planes. But northerners say their more dire transportation needs are being neglected.

Amsterdam Eases Train Travel to London, Despite Brexit

It will now take just four hours and ten minutes to travel from Amsterdam to London on the Eurostar high-speed train.

Amsterdam Leads the Way on Wetland Restoration

The Dutch capital has long been a global model for flood management in a manmade landscape. Now it is seeking to break ground on how it preserves wetlands.

photo: Vienna art museum

Vienna’s Cultural Approach to Going Car-Free

In an effort to cut vehicle emissions and boost public transportation, Austria’s capital will reward car-free travel with free access to museums and concerts.

In Paris, a Very Progressive Agenda Is Going Mainstream

Boosted by big sustainability wins, Mayor Anne Hidalgo is pitching bold plans to make the city center “100 percent bicycle” and turn office space into housing.

Before Paris’s Modern-Day Studios, There Were Chambres de Bonne

Tiny upper-floor “maids’ rooms” have helped drive down local assumptions about exactly how small a livable home can be.

Why Amsterdam’s Canal Houses Have Endured for 300 Years

A different kind of wealth distribution in 17th-century Amsterdam paved the way for its quintessential home design.

How Berlin's Mietskaserne Tenements Became Coveted Urban Housing

Why do mid-rise tenements dominate Berlin? The Mietskaserne, or “rental barracks,” have shaped the city’s culture and its counterculture.

What’s Behind the Iconic Floor Plan of London

The most common residential floor plans in European cities offer a window into urban history and culture. In London, it’s the “two-up, two-down” row house.

photo: An Amazon shop opens in Paris in 2018.

Paris to Amazon: No Free Delivery for You

Mayor Anne Hidalgo wants the e-commerce company to pay for the carbon emissions and traffic congestion that online shopping generates in the French capital.

photo: Uber app and sign for City of London

Why London Has Stripped Uber’s License

The ride-hailing company could be banned from its largest European market after passenger security concerns trigger a new crackdown by Transport for London.

photo: rooftops in Paris, France

Airbnb’s Olympic Sponsorship Deal Isn’t Playing Well in Paris

The home-rental company inked a massive deal to sponsor the Olympics until 2028—over fierce objections from the host city for the 2024 Games.