Sarah Holder

Sarah Holder

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

A man stands next to an electric scooter

Why Electric Scooters Companies Are Getting Serious About Safety

Lime has joined rival Bird in establishing a safety advisory board tasked with helping the e-scooter industry shape local regulations—and shake its risky reputation.

A man protesting Uber driver wages holds up a sign.

How a California Bill Could Affect Gig Work, Uber, Lyft, and Drivers

Supporters and foes of California’s AB5 marched on the capitol this week over the bill that could transform the business model for Uber, Lyft, and drivers.

A photo of a self-storage unit.

The Airbnb for America's Extra Crap Is Here

A startup called Neighbor bills itself as an “Airbnb for storage,” allowing hosts to rent out their empty sheds, closets and basements for other people’s stuff.

A man works at a laptop inside a small booth within a large open office.

Can ‘Pods’ Bring Quiet to the Noisy Open Office?

Now that office walls have come down, workers are ducking into closet-sized “pods” for privacy and quiet. Is this a retreat from the open office or the next phase of it?

Police officers patrol NYC Pride.

Do Police Have a Place at Pride Parades?

Stonewall’s anniversary has cops and LGBTQ activists revisiting their fraught history—and debating if police belong at celebrations of gay and trans rights.

A photo of a monarch butterfly perched on a pink flower.

Pollinator Cities Really Could Save the Monarchs

The milkweed needed to stabilize the country’s monarch-butterfly population thrives in metropolitan areas—especially on residential land.

A photo of Donald Trump in the Oval Office, with HUD Secretary Ben Carson.

Don’t Call Trump’s Housing Order a YIMBY Plan

The president just signed an executive order calling for states and cities to pursue zoning reform. But affordable housing advocates aren’t celebrating.

A map showing the affordability of housing in the U.S.

Minimum Wage Still Can’t Pay for a Two-Bedroom Apartment Anywhere

The 30th anniversary edition of the National Low Income Housing Coalition report, “Out of Reach,” shows that housing affordability is getting worse, not better.

A group of teenagers and police officers gather on a rooftop in Oakland.

In 1990s Oakland, Youth Voices Started A Movement

We Are Here, an exhibit at two museums in the Bay Area, documents candid 1990s’ conversations among Oakland youth and cops, and the activist work they ignited.

A photo of an abandoned building in Newark, New Jersey.

The 10 Cities Getting a Philanthropic Boost for Economic Mobility

An initiative funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Ballmer Group focuses on building “pipelines of opportunity.”

a photo of a striking Uber/Lyft driver

Uber and Lyft Really Don’t Want California to Pass This Worker Rights Bill

As California considers a gig-work bill to make ride-hailing drivers employees eligible for benefits and bargaining rights, Uber and Lyft ask for compromise.

A rendering of a co-living building in San Jose.

The Largest Co-Living Building in the World Is Coming to San Jose

The startup Starcity plans to build an 800-unit, 18-story “dorm for adults” to help affordably house Silicon Valley’s booming workforce.

A woman at the doctor's office.

Life Expectancy Is Associated With Segregation in U.S. Cities

“Your neighborhood shouldn’t influence your odds of seeing your grandchildren grow up,” says a researcher for NYU’s new analysis of City Health Dashboard data.

Why Cleveland Wants to Bring Back Postal Banking

An idea from the early 20th century is ripe for revival in urban “banking deserts,” say advocates like the U.S. postal worker union.

A Planned Parenthood building

The Subtle Ways Cities Are Restricting Abortion Access

Using zoning laws and land-use codes, anti-abortion city leaders are shutting down clinics. Can reproductive rights activists beat them at their own game?

Opponents of SB 50.

The Push for Denser Zoning Is Here to Stay

Residential “upzoning” policies being adopted from Minneapolis to Seattle were once politically out of the question. Now they’re just politically fraught.

Bill de Blasio, the mayor of New York City (Left) and Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend (Right)

Two Mayors-for-President, Head to Head

With Bill de Blasio’s 2020 bid, there are multiple sitting mayors in the crowded Democratic primary. How does NYC’s candidate compare to Pete Buttigieg?

A newly-installed 5G antenna system in San Diego, California.

Communities Are Fighting 5G, Permit by Permit

NIMBY backlash is complicating the next generation of wireless internet technology, with recent help from the California Supreme Court.