Also: China’s electric bus revolution, and a big-box store becomes a high school.
What We’re Following
Texas hold’em: Fair housing advocates in Texas are suing the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in an effort to make the Trump administration enforce a fair housing rule 50 years in the making. The policy itself goes back to the Fair Housing Act of 1968, which requires communities that accept federal dollars to “affirmatively further fair housing.” That hasn’t happened, of course. But the Obama-era rule at the center of this lawsuit requires jurisdictions to draw up a fair-housing action plan, a first step toward desegregation.
Or at least, that’s what the rule did, before Secretary Ben Carson suspended it in January. The lawsuit filed this morning by Texas housing advocates would force the department to resume implementing the rule—which would have a big impact on how Texas spends $5 billion in federal hurricane recovery funds. As CityLab’s Kriston Capps reports, the future of fair housing may be settled in the Lone Star State.
Election watch: Voters in the Charlotte area will select their sheriff in today’s primary elections—and for many residents, it’s effectively a referendum on immigration policy. Activists launched an aggressive campaign to oust the current sheriff for allowing Trump-style local immigration enforcement, a practice the two challengers have vowed to end. CityLab’s Alastair Boone has the story.
More on CityLab
Nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in 2016, reaching the highest level of fatal crashes since 1990, the Washington Post reports. After hitting a low in 2009, pedestrian deaths have jumped up 46 percent, outpacing the overall increase in traffic fatalities, which are up just 11 percent.
The chart above, from the study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a nonprofit funded by auto insurers, pinpoints where these fatal crashes increased the most—in urban-suburban areas, on arterial roads, as well as at night and away from intersections. Another key factor not shown: vehicle type. The report says that crashes were increasingly likely to involve SUVs and high-horsepower vehicles, which tend to be driven faster and above the speed limit. CityLab context: Pedestrian deaths climb, while safety laws lag.
What We’re Reading
The best possible use for the hyperloop is a cargo train (Curbed)
Why Egypt is building a new capital city (The Guardian)
Uber’s self-driving software detected pedestrian Elaine Herzberg before the fatal crash, but it didn’t react in time (Recode)
The water will come, but not to this Miami home (New York Times)
Airbnb reinvents the hostel (Washington Post)