Laura Bliss

Laura Bliss

Laura Bliss is a staff writer at CityLab, covering transportation and the environment. She also authors MapLab, a biweekly newsletter about maps (subscribe here). Her work has appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, Los Angeles magazine, and beyond.

MapLab: 4,000 Hours of North America

A biweekly tour of the ever-expanding cartographic landscape.

Traffic on a Colorado highway is engulfed in smoke from a wildfire in 2012.

The Planet Can't Survive Our Transportation Habits

In light of the IPCC’s dire report, substituting some personal convenience in the present could mean that much more hope for the planet’s future.

MapLab: Volunteer Rescuers Flooding the Map

A biweekly tour of the ever-expanding cartographic landscape.

A New York subway train is pictured.

Let People Carry Huge Crap on the Subway

It’s never OK in rush hour. But when the train isn’t crowded, it might be a person’s only option, and we should all be able to live with that.

When a Hospital Plays Housing Developer

A children’s hospital in Columbus, Ohio, is trying to treat a difficult patient: Its own struggling neighborhood.

Like Uber, but for Cartographers

Streetcred, a blockchain-powered open-source mapping startup, will pay you to map. (And then give the data away for free.)

After Florence, the Gullah Could Face New Threats

Thousands of acres throughout the flooded Carolinas are heir’s property, a form of land ownership that leaves residents vulnerable to speculators.

How Hurricane Florence Fueled a Pop-Up Micro-Economy

Need a lift? Hit the hurricane ride board.

MapLab: To Track a Hurricane

A biweekly tour of the ever-expanding cartographic landscape.

Floodwaters caused by rain from Hurricane Matthew block NC Highway 41 outside of Lumberton, North Carolina in 2016.

As Hurricane Florence Approaches, the Rural Carolinas Brace For Impact

Widespread poverty, lack of transportation resources, and poor internet service could complicate emergency response in a region still reeling from Hurricane Matthew in 2016.

On Yelp, Gentrification Is in the Stars

Research based on years of Yelp reviews finds new grocery stores and coffee shops are indeed indicators of changing populations and rising home prices.

How Smart Should a City Be? Toronto Is Finding Out

A data-driven “neighborhood of the future” masterminded by a Google corporate sibling, the Quayside project could be a milestone in digital-age city-building. But after a year of scandal in Silicon Valley, questions about privacy and security remain.

MapLab: How Satellites Cracked Open A Gold Mine

A biweekly tour of the ever-expanding cartographic landscape.

Weirdly, Canals and Trains Made Pre-Civil-War Americans Smaller

Why a transportation revolution had some unanticipated side effects.  

What an Anti-Transit Federal Transit Administration Looks Like

A GAO report says the FTA “runs the risk of violating federal law” as it blocks rail and bus projects.

What's Crazy About Biking to the Hospital to Have a Baby?

The stir caused by New Zealand minister Julie Anne Genter’s journey to an Auckland hospital says more about us than her.

Can Elon Musk Save Baseball?

The embattled Tesla CEO is proposing a 3.6 mile “Dugout Loop” to help get L.A. fans to Dodger Stadium.

A Bird e-scooter on a San Francisco sidewalk.

What Ends Up On the Sidewalk

Sidewalks are a last shred of safe public space. No wonder we’re fighting over them.

MapLab: Satellites on Fire

A biweekly tour of the ever-expanding cartographic landscape.

The $1.4 Billion Transit Fund the U.S. Government Won’t Release

From El Paso to Minneapolis, local rail and bus projects are waiting on federal money that should have arrived by now.

It's Way Too Hot on the New York City Subway

Temperatures on New York City transit platforms are reaching past 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Many cars aren’t much better. How did we get here?