Sarah Holder

Sarah Holder

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

A photo of reporters Gary Massaro and Judi Villa in the newsroom of the Rocky Mountain News in Denver.

When Local Newsrooms Shrink, Fewer Candidates Run for Mayor

A study of 11 California newspapers shows that when cities have fewer reporters, political competition and voter turnout suffer.

U.S. 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg speaks at the 2019 National Action Network National Convention in New York.

Pete Buttigieg and the Police Department: Race Record Under Scrutiny

After a speech surfaced with Pete Buttigieg saying "All Lives Matter" in 2015, racial issues in the South Bend police department, and Buttigieg's role in them, are being scrutinized.

A photo of a man sleeping on San Francisco's Embarcadero

Dueling GoFundMe Campaigns Highlight a San Francisco NIMBY Battle

A group called Safe Embarcadero turned to crowdfunding to help bankroll a legal fight against Mayor London Breed's planned navigation center for homeless residents. Then came the counterattack.

How the Country’s Hottest Rental Market Is Trying to Cool Down

As California’s governor tackles a state-wide housing crisis, he’s looking to cities like San Jose to invest in a smorgasbord of potential solutions.

Where Do Americans Feel Best About Local News?

People expect local journalists to be deeply engaged with their communities. A new report suggests San Antonio and the Twin Cities are on to something.

Uber drivers protest outside of Uber's office in Santa Monica, California in 2014.

Why L.A.’s Ride-Hail Drivers Went on Strike

As Uber and Lyft prepare for IPOs, Los Angeles ride-share drivers turned off their apps Monday to fight for higher wages and fairer treatment.

North Carolina's legislature building.

North Carolina’s Contentious Bid to Bridge the Urban-Rural Divide

The state plans to relocate its Division of Motor Vehicles from booming Raleigh to lagging Rocky Mount. Can this be a national model for decentralizing power?

Why Wayne Messam Wants to Go From Florida Mayor to POTUS

While fighting to enact stricter gun control locally, Messam is launching a 2020 campaign to built on addressing student loan debt and climate change.

Amazon public policy representative Holly Sullivan hugs Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam.

In Nashville, Will Amazon Overpromise and Under-Deliver?

New salary data cast doubt among activists on whether Amazon will fulfill its compensation pledge in Nashville. And they’re advocating to stall local approvals.

A woman works at a McDonald's drive-through window.

As AI Takes Over Jobs, Women Workers May Have the Most to Lose

Women, especially if they are Hispanic, may be at most financial risk from the automation of jobs says a new report from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

An App For Mapping Crime, or Urban Paranoia?

The crime-tracking app Citizen, which recently launched in Baltimore, alerts users to danger nearby. Where some critics see risks, others see a tool for empowerment.

The Stark Traffic Safety Divide

Pedestrians fatalities are rising sharply as Americans spend more time behind the wheel. And self-driving technology isn’t likely to be the fix we need.

Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg shakes hands with a man.

Why the Midwest’s Mayor-for-President Is Focused on the Future of Work

In a crowded Democratic field, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is homing in on automation of jobs as a key 2020 presidential issue.

Gallaudet University.

How to Design a Better City for Deaf People

Lighting, sound-deflecting surfaces, big spaces—all of these elements can influence a deaf person’s ability to communicate. DeafSpace design considers it all.

A photo of a tiny house.

Tiny House Trend, Meet the Mattress-in-a-Box Boom

In search of marketing synergy, Walmart’s Allswell mattress brand is getting into the prefab home business, selling trailer-mounted houses by Modern Tiny Living via its website.

A ferry docked next to a warehouse in Long Island City, Queens

Why the Amazon Pushback Is Also About Immigrants

After the HQ2 cancellation in Queens, Amazon’s connections to federal immigration enforcement are drawing scrutiny and criticism in other cities, too.

A Valentine’s Day Tradition, Born in the Heart of Boston

In the 1800s, candy helped make Boston an industrial powerhouse. Candy hearts have been a lasting legacy of that era, though their future is less certain.

New York’s Ejection of Amazon Is the Start of a Movement

NYC lawmakers who led a resistance campaign against HQ2 are declaring victory. And already, they have plans to escalate their opposition to tax incentives.

CityLab Daily: Amazon Pulls HQ2 From New York City

Also: The cities with the most singles, and the opioid crisis’s rural-urban divide.

Protestors hold a sign that reads "Respect Democracy Our Vote Matters"

The Conservative Backlash Against Progressive Ballot Measures

In many states, ballot initiatives on expanding Medicaid, limiting gerrymandering, and raising the minimum wage swept to victory in November. Now lawmakers are doing their best to reverse them.