Sarah Holder

Sarah Holder

Sarah Holder is a staff writer at CityLab covering local policy, housing, labor, and technology.

photo: a mounted police officer looks at his phone

Nextdoor Wants to Be a One-Stop Shop for Police

The neighborhood social network’s new app is aimed at public agencies, and it lets local law enforcement more easily tap into the online community.

photo: an unfinished house in Raleigh, NC

Raleigh Wants to Raze and Rebuild the Community Meeting

Facing a housing shortage, the North Carolina city is dismantling its Citizen Advisory Councils, which have shaped development decisions since 1974.

photo: a sign protesting meth use in rural Montana.

The Rise and Fall of America’s Rural Meth Labs

In his new book The Alchemy of Meth, anthropologist Jason Pine chronicles how methamphetamine addiction reshaped rural Missouri, and beyond.

The Presidential Candidates that Mayors Support

Big-city mayors favor Mike Bloomberg after his late entry into the race, while leaders in smaller cities have lined up behind Pete Buttigieg.

photo: Dominque Walker, founder of Moms 4 Housing, n the kitchen of the vacant house in West Oakland that the group occupied to draw attention to fair housing issues.

A Group of Mothers, a Vacant Home, and a Win for Fair Housing

The activist group Moms 4 Housing occupied a vacant home in Oakland to draw attention to the city’s affordability crisis. They ended up launching a movement.

The Cities Americans Want to Flee, and Where They Want to Go

An Apartment List report reveals the cities apartment-hunters are targeting for their next move—and shows that tales of a California exodus may be overstated.

photo: a couple tries out a mattress in a store.

What’s the Future of the ‘Sleep Economy’?

As bed-in-a-box startup Casper files for an IPO, the buzzy mattress seller is betting that the next big thing in sleep is brick-and-mortar retail outlets.

a sign advertising public parking next to a large building

U.S. Mayors Say Infrastructure Is a Priority. But What Kind?

The Menino Survey of Mayors identifies priorities like infrastructure, traffic safety, and climate change. But many mayors aren’t eager to challenge the status quo.

a detail from Andrew's Cuomo's 2020 State of the State goals

The Squid and the Governor

Design experts sound off about New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s unusual, cephalopod-filled graphic design sensibility.

photo: San Francisco skyline

Would Capping Office Space Ease San Francisco’s Housing Crunch?

Proposition E would put a moratorium on new commercial real estate if affordable housing goals aren’t met. But critics aren’t convinced it would be effective.   

photo: Democratic candidate Pete Buttigieg

Buttigieg’s Infrastructure Plan Calls for a National Vision Zero

The Democratic candidate’s $1 trillion pledge to upgrade roads, utilities, and public transportation has an emphasis on road safety and climate adaptation.

photo: electric scooters in San Diego

Micromobility, Meet the Teamsters

Spin’s San Francisco workers have voted to join the local Teamsters union—a micromobility milestone made possible by a new state law.

a whole bunch of photos of women eating lunch and laughing

What Have We Done to Lunch?

From the Automat to Sweetgreen Outpost, grabbing a bite during the workday has long sacrificed human contact and flavor to value and efficiency.

a map of future climate risks in the U.S.

America After Climate Change, Mapped

With “The 2100 Project: An Atlas for A Green New Deal,” the McHarg Center tries to visualize how the warming world will reshape the United States.

An Urban Agenda for the 2020 Candidates

Some 99 mayors have a new policy agenda for the presidential candidates. Their message: Fund the priorities our local citizens are actually talking to us about.

A woman works on her laptop, surrounded by toys.

The Toll of Parenting on the American Woman’s Workweek

Though they pick up more hours than ever, mothers’ proportion in the workforce has stalled, finds a new report from the Institute for Women's Policy Research.

photo: a WeWork office

For Many WeWork Employees, the Job Is About to Change

The co-working giant is letting 2,400 employees go and outsourcing 1,000 cleaning and facilities jobs as part of a company-wide belt-tightening.

photo: a digital advertising billboard on a car roof

Car-Mounted Ads Take a New Direction: Data Collection

A startup called Firefly puts sensor-equipped advertising screens on top of Uber and Lyft vehicles. Now they do more than marketing: They collect data.

Drilling Wells in Los Angeles

Why Is California Approving So Many New Oil Wells?

Drilling and fracking permits are up since Governor Newsom took office. But it’s not totally clear why.

A poster for Seattle city councilmember Kshama Sawant that reads "Tax Amazon."

How Seattle’s City Council Race Became the Amazon Election

Amazon contributed more than a million dollars to a pro-business PAC in Seattle city council races. But that wasn’t the biggest tech spend in local elections.