Also: Paving over the Everglades, and why cities want their own cryptocurrency.

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

“I do not want to be an enabler in this process. I do not want the city to participate in this process.” That’s how Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner is responding to news that a new migrant detention center is slated to open in his city amid outcry over the federal government’s policy of separating migrant children from their parents.

Now, declaring moral opposition to the policy, he’s hinting at what power the city has to get in the way: The fire department hasn’t inspected the site yet, for example, and it doesn’t have the city’s food and shelter permit. He’s one of many mayors assessing what steps they can take to protest the government’s child separation policy. We expect to hear more tomorrow, when mayors from around the United States head to Tornillo, Texas, to survey the situation. CityLab’s Tanvi Misra has the story: Can Houston Stall the Opening of a Migrant Child Detention Center?

More on this story

Andrew Small


More on CityLab

Pave Over the Everglades With a Highway? Sounds 'Sexy'!

Days before a key vote, Miami-Dade transit advocates are rallying against a proposed interstate expansion.

Laura Bliss

Why Do Cities Want Their Own Cryptocurrencies?

The allure of digital currencies has hit Dubai, Seoul, Berkeley, and more. What looks like another offshoot of the Bitcoin craze could be an evolution of the municipal bond.

Sarah Holder and Linda Poon

I Survived D.C.’s First ‘Sweat Crawl’

“Forget what you’re going to be someday—you’re strong … today!”

Tanvi Misra

Criminalizing Homelessness Doesn’t Work

“Anti-vagrancy” laws are cruel, costly, and counterproductive. They make it even harder to escape homelessness.

Joseph W. Mead and Sara Rankin

Should Opting Out of Union Fees Be a Right?

This Supreme Court is due to rule on a case that would no longer allow non-union members to be charged “fair-share” fees by the unions that bargain for their rights.

Sarah Holder


Tip-Off

Map of DC Initiative 77 support
(David Montgomery/CityLab)

D.C. voters settled a dispute between two national restaurant associations on Tuesday, approving a ballot measure to raise the base wage for tipped workers, who receive less than minimum wage under federal law. The measure was the most contentious issue to face D.C. voters in years. While the final vote tally was hardly a representative measure for the city—a local primary in a midterm national election year never crushes the polls—the decision on Initiative 77 fell along stark racial and class lines. Across all majority-white precincts, nearly 50 percent of voters favored Initiative 77. Support was nine percentage points higher in majority non-white precincts. In the above screenshot of an interactive precinct map, CityLab data reporter David Montgomery shows how a vote on wages for some of the city’s poorest workers revealed a classic segregation pattern in the District.

Kriston Capps


What We’re Reading

How tech companies conquered cities (New York Times)

Uber’s plan to get more electric cars on the road (Curbed)

Most American homes are still heated with fossil fuels. It’s time to electrify (Vox)

New York, once a great city, now “unremarkable” and “boring” (Harper’s)

As rural towns lose population, they can “shrink smart” (NPR)


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. Equity

    Elizabeth Warren’s Ambitious Fix for America’s Housing Crisis

    The Massachusetts Democrat introduced legislation that takes aim at segregation, redlining, restrictive zoning, and the loss of equity by low-income homeowners.

  2. Equity

    Why Affordable Housing Isn’t More Affordable

    Local regulations—and the NIMBY sentiments behind them—are a big driver of costs of low-income housing developers. Why don’t we know exactly how much?

  3. A New York subway train is pictured.
    Transportation

    A Tepid Defense of Hauling Huge Things on the Subway

    It’s never okay in rush hour. But when the train isn’t crowded, it might be a person’s only option, and we can all live with that.

  4. Life

    The Museum of Broken Windows Makes a Powerful Plea for Police Reform

    In a pop-up exhibition, artists and activists display personal experiences with a fraught theory of policing.

  5. Transportation

    Why Did America Give Up on Mass Transit? (Don't Blame Cars.)

    Streetcar, bus, and metro systems have been ignoring one lesson for 100 years: Service drives demand.