Also: The unhappy states of America, and how school choice affects gentrification.

Keep up with the most pressing, interesting, and important city stories of the day. Sign up for the CityLab Daily newsletter here.

***

What We’re Following

A grim milestone: As local authorities in Tempe, Arizona, investigate the first pedestrian fatality from a self-driving car, police say an early review of the vehicle’s video footage suggests Uber isn’t at fault. “It would have been difficult to avoid this collision” no matter if the car was autonomous or human-driven, Tempe Police Chief Sylvia Moir said. The victim, 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg, “came from the shadows right into the roadway,” Moir said.

But transportation experts aren’t so sure: LIDAR, the laser-based system that lets autonomous cars “see,” is supposed to automatically detect when someone's on the road. The crash occurred on a wide-open and regularly tested location. That has some observers questioning Uber’s approach to road safety, while the company has suspended its autonomous vehicle tests. CityLab’s Laura Bliss unpacks the many questions that remain after Sunday’s crash.

Andrew Small


More on CityLab

The Unhappy States of America

Even with the economy humming, Americans are feeling more anxious, depressed, and dissatisfied with their lives than they did in 2009.

Richard Florida

Resilience Trutherism, Explained

There is a movement of people who believe that “climate resilience” is a Trojan horse for a global takeover of cities via weather manipulation, and a D.C. city council member may subscribe to that idea.

Brentin Mock

In a Historic Downtown, Disaster Becomes a Chance to Build Something Better

A 2014 fire in Clarkesville, Georgia, was “the worst nightmare for someone who’s in downtown development.” But the recovery launched an essential conversation about what the town square should be.

Adina Solomon

The Right Way to Regulate Algorithms

They’re intended to make decision-making more objective. But data-based tools will have the opposite effect if they aren’t subject to public scrutiny.

Stephen Goldsmith and Chris Bousquet

School Choice May Be Accelerating Gentrification

The ability to opt out of a neighborhood school increases the likelihood that a black or Hispanic neighborhood will see an influx of wealthier residents.

Matt Barnum


Grand Designs

Natural light fills a studio at the School of Architecture at CEPT University, which Doshi founded in 1962. (Courtesy of VSF)
Natural light fills a studio at the School of Architecture at CEPT University, which Balkrishna Doshi founded in 1962. (Courtesy of VSF)

Balkrishna Doshi, this year’s winner of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, has left a deep imprint on Ahmedabad, India. The Indian architect, a protege of the legendary Le Corbusier, moved to the city in 1954 to supervise four Le Corbusier projects and soon started his own practice. For CityLab, Ashish Malhotra spoke with Doshi in his Ahmedabad office, where he reflected on more than 65 years in the city he calls home:

I always liked this city because of the intimacy, the congeniality of the people here: very generous, very helpful and encouraging. And I think that’s what the essence of this city is.


What We’re Reading

Comparing Oakland’s embrace of pot sales with Compton’s ban (New York Times)

Trump’s tariffs barely register in America’s new steel towns (New Yorker)

The myth of “forcing people out of their cars” (Vox)

When towns lose their newspapers, disease detectives are flying blind (Stat News)

Homesick for a place you’ve never been before (Atlas Obscura)


Tell your friends about the CityLab Daily! Forward this newsletter to someone who loves cities and encourage them to subscribe. Send your own comments, feedback, and tips to hello@citylab.com.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. The facade of a casino in Atlantic City.
    Photos

    Photographing the Trumpian Urbanism of Atlantic City

    Brian Rose’s new book uses the deeply troubled New Jersey city as a window into how a developer-turned-president operates.

  2. Life

    Who’s Really Buying Property in San Francisco?

    A lot of software developers, according to an unprecedented new analysis.

  3. Design rendering of a high-tech floating city.
    Environment

    Floating Cities Aren’t the Answer to Climate Change

    UN-Habitat is looking at high-tech urban islands as a potential survival fix for communities at risk from rising seas. This isn’t what resilience looks like.

  4. a photo of a beach in Hawaii
    Transportation

    Could Hawaii Be Paradise For Hydrogen-Powered Public Transit?

    As prices drop for renewable power, some researchers hope the island state could be the ideal testbed for hydrogen fuel cells in public transportation.

  5. A map of Baltimore and its surrounding leafy suburbs.
    Environment

    Every Tree in the City, Mapped

    Researchers at Descartes Labs are using artificial intelligence to make a better map of the urban tree canopy.