John Metcalfe

John Metcalfe is CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, based in Oakland. His coverage focuses on climate change and the science of cities.

Fog swallows up the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

Your Real-Time Eye on San Francisco's Famous Fog

Bask in the sublime beauty of “Karl,” the city’s chilly miasma, with these always-updated satellite images.

The Rivers of the U.S., Collected Into a Nifty Subway Map

A designer who spent his youth floating on rafts has conjured up a delightful transit guide to America’s waterways.

An illuminated statue of E. coli in a park in lower Manhattan

New York City Salutes a Fecal Microbe That Sickens Millions

What better place for a giant statue of E. coli?

Boston Commuters Brace For GIF-Based Etiquette Campaign

Get ready to have your subway behavior corrected by cute dogs, cats, and a sneezing panda.

Where the Dogs Are in New York

One former dog-walker has set out to map the city’s varying degrees of doggy density.

Mapping America's Longest and Shortest Commutes

Which U.S. counties have the fastest travel times to work, and where do the roads seem paved with molasses?

Citi Bikes are pictured.

A Stark Comparison of Parking Vs. Bike-Share Spaces

Watch New Yorkers swarm a Citi Bike station like mad ants while cars sit virtually idle across the street.

Mapping the Shout-Outs of Lil Jon and Ice Cube

Has your city had the honor of being profanely recognized by these hip-hop kings?

San Francisco's New Bike Racks Are Self-Aware

They make security cameras take your picture and cry for help if somebody is stealing your bike.

A screwdriver, Rubik's cube, and chain.

Bus Shelters Are Less Boring When Equipped With a Rubik's Cube

Here’s a DIY guide to livening up your bus stop with the world’s most-beloved puzzle.

A man soaking in a hot tub made from a giant pothole on a street, surrounded by dirt and construction tape

How to Get the City to Notice Your Damn Pothole

A citizen’s guide to wacky schemes, from impromptu hot tubs to “birthday parties.”

Gorgeous 180-Degree Panoramas of Latin America's Churches

Photographer Richard Silver bends the vaulted ceilings of churches into surreal, dazzling designs.

Portland Deploys Thief-Proof Bike Racks

The city’s bike bandits like attacking racks—but this one fights back.

A Fantasy Subway Map of Ancient Roman Roads

If the Roman Empire had managed build a continents-spanning transit system for its empire, it might have looked like this.

A ghost-bike monument to a rider killed nearby lies draped with flowers in Santiago, Chile.

Why Are the Costs of Bike Crashes Rising So Much?

The tumultuous urban environment seems to be driving up the dire consequences of wrecking, researchers say.

Behold the Power of the Seriously Loud Bike Horn

“It makes me laugh every time,” says a Brooklyn cyclist who uses an assault-grade bike horn.

A bike missing its front wheel lies in a rack at Oakland's Fruitvale BART station.

How to Thief-Proof Your Bike

Bay Area bike pros explain how to save your ride from being picked apart like a free Thanksgiving turkey.

An award-winning visualization uses satellite imagery to reveal the changing lPacific Northwest landscape since the 1990s.

Watch the Pacific Northwest Change Before Your Eyes

An award-winning visualization uses satellite imagery to reveal the ravages of development, fire, insects, and clear-cut logging.

A photograph of bicycles in China that are equipped with air filtration equipment to protect riders from smog.

What If Bikes Ate Smog?

No, not metaphorically. We’re talking about sending fleets of bicycles with air filtration equipment into the streets to remove nasty airborne particles.

In the Future, We Will Paint By Drone

Finally, swarms of spray-painting drones can create street art.

A creative crosswalk in Rotterdam urges pedestrians to "Stand Straight."

Funky Dutch Crosswalks Celebrate the Pedestrian

In Rotterdam, the streets have a message: “Walk Proud.”