Also: Are planners partly to blame for gentrification? And preserving the legacy of black baseball in Detroit.
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What We’re Following
Fuggedaboutit: If you ask someone to name a left-behind industrial city, you’re likely to hear places like Detroit or Cleveland. Those places certainly have their challenges, but they also have a lot going for them: large companies, talent, airports, even name recognition. “The truly left behind and most forgotten places are smaller places, many of which are little known,” the Manhattan Institute’s Aaron Renn writes for CityLab. But, he argues, speculative projects or subsidies aren’t the way to help turn things around.
Renn argues that the best strategy for stagnating cities is to create the “preconditions of revival” by balancing budgets, eliminating corruption, and rebuilding core public services. To that end, a newly released Manhattan Institute report offers strategies to revitalize cities such as Danville, Illinois; Johnstown, Pennsylvania; Michigan City, Indiana; Pittsfield, Massachusetts; and Youngstown, Ohio. By doing basic civic repair, cities can be prepared for when market forces swing back in their favor instead of placing bets on business relocations or expensive amenities to restore their economic vitality. Read his perspective: How to Bring Back Struggling Cities
More on CityLab
Root for the Home Team
On Major League Baseball’s opening day, you may have noticed a patch on the players’ uniforms that reads “MLB 150.” That’s commemorating the Cincinnati Red Stockings, a club team that became the the first professional baseball team in 1869—and went on to win an unprecedented 81 straight games. That winning streak put the “young, growing, grimy city” of Cincinnati on the map, and it also made the very idea of professional baseball acceptable to the American public. “This did not just make the city famous,” says John Thorn, Major League Baseball’s official historian. “It made baseball famous.” Read: How Cincinnati Turned Baseball Into a National Sensation
What We’re Reading
An EPA science panel is considering guidelines that upend basic air pollution science (NPR)
Four maps that show who’s being left behind in America’s wind-power boom (Vox)
Residents in San Francisco started a GoFundMe to block a new homeless shelter (The Guardian)
Subway bathrooms: Are they as bad as you think? (New York Times)
Even with IPO money, can Uber and Lyft survive long enough to replace their drivers with machines? (Washington Post)