Also: Parakeets are taking over Europe, and Minneapolis understood that NIMBYism has victims.
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What We’re Following
Thanks for the TIF: Readers, it’s time again for CityLab University. We asked you what urban policy concept you would like explained next and we got a resounding call for the urban redevelopment tool known as Tax Increment Financing, better known as TIF. You lovable nerds. If you’re not already familiar with it, you should be, because behind that dry-as-dust name is a powerful (and controversial) incentive tool for economic development.
By creating special tax districts around targeted redevelopment areas, TIFs can help steer investment to neighborhoods where it otherwise might not happen, but they also divert tax revenue away from other community services. TIF has played a role in megaprojects such as Chicago’s Lincoln Yards and Amazon’s HQ2 in Arlington, Virginia, but also in smaller-scale neighborhood improvements, affordable housing, and transit projects. Benjamin Schneider explains all in the latest edition of CityLab University: Tax Increment Financing
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What We’re Reading
A design playscape is slated to come to Boston’s City Hall (Next City)
Study: 60 percent of Uber riders don’t tip their driver at all (Slate)
Underground lives: The sunless apartments of immigrants in Queens (New York Times)