Also: A patriotic museum’s trouble in the suburbs, and the untapped potential of alleys.

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What We’re Following

Hot air balloon: Many U.S. mayors haven’t been afraid to air their feelings about President Trump, and today we see that extends across the pond. A “carnival of resistance” already awaited Trump’s visit to the United Kingdom, even as he mostly skipped out on London, but that didn’t stop a war of words with London Mayor Sadiq Khan. In an interview with The Sun, Trump said, “You have a mayor who has done a terrible job in London. He has done a terrible job,” as he criticized immigration for having “changed the fabric” of Europe and enabling terrorism.

There’s almost nothing Khan can do about immigration policy, but he did defend one decision he made: allowing protesters to fly a cartoonish “baby Trump” blimp over the Houses of Parliament. He also spoke up for that “fabric” of London: “The wonderful thing about our city is the diversity. I hope you’ll realise it’s a strength not to be afraid of, but to be cherished.”

Andrew Small


More on CityLab

A Patriotic Museum Meets Suburban Resistance

The National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation was shocked earlier this year when its Moshe Safdie-concieved proposal was rejected by a local planning commission for being too tall.

Jolee Edmondson

Bugs and Birds: New Residents of a Greener Madrid

Since 2015, Madrid’s government has been trying to increase the city’s biodiversity. Hundreds of birdhouses and “insect hotels” around the city seem to be working.

Jaime Velazquez

Finding the Untapped Potential of Alleys

“We’re starting to realize they’re just as powerful as a park or plaza.”

Lynn Freehill-Maye

How Cape Town Got to the Brink of Water Catastrophe

And how it stepped back, just in time.

Brett Walton

Electric Double-Decker Buses Are Coming to L.A.

They’re not just for sightseeing anymore.

Claire Tran

ICE Is a Godsend for One Small Town in Texas

After the immigrant detention center in Raymondville closed down, the local economy took a dive. Officials hope its reopening will bring an influx of cash and jobs.

Jeremy Raff


What You Doin’ Uptown?

NW corner of E. 125th St. at Lexington Ave., Harlem, 2018. (Camilo José Vergara)

In 1967 when Lou Reed sang the lyric “Up to Lexington, one, two, five,” in the Velvet Underground’s “I’m Waiting for my Man,” he was talking about East 125th Street at Lexington Avenue in Harlem. While the new apartments have raised the rent since then, it remains the heart one of the most diverse and energetic among New York’s segregated intersections, where people of all ages and races rush past those standing on the corner. In Camilo José Vergara’s latest Crossroads photo project for CityLab, he documents the push and pull along this busy Harlem block.


What We’re Reading

American cities are drowning in car storage (Streetsblog)

A “dignified alternative” to the shopping cart for homeless people’s belongings (The Guardian)

Our homes don’t need formal spaces (Curbed)

Why did the human cross the road? To confuse the self-driving car (Wired)

In about 20 years, half the U.S. population will live in eight states (Washington Post)


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