Buildings & Design


  • Buildings in Bethesda, Maryland.
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    DenisTangneyJr via Getty Images

    DC-area county spurs electrification of future buildings

    Montgomery County, Maryland, is taking aim at its largest source of emissions. Its policy is the latest advancement for building decarbonization on the East Coast.

    By Dec. 1, 2022
  • Digital data flow on road with motion blur to create vision of fast speed transfer.
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    NanoStockk/iStock/Getty Images Plus via Getty Images

    9 startups to join AWS’ Sustainable Cities Accelerator for Infrastructure

    Each accelerator participant aims to address infrastructure-related sustainability challenges by offering products and services targeting power, utility, transportation and other systems.

    By Nov. 30, 2022
  • San Francisco skyline at night
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    iStock/Getty via Getty Images

    Five US cities target building energy use, emissions with fines

    New York, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Boston and St. Louis are poised to implement penalties to curb building-level greenhouse gas emissions or energy use.

    By Maura Webber Sadovi • Nov. 30, 2022
  • A man riding a bike in a dedicated bike lane.
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    alvarez/E+ via Getty Images

    NYC to expand bike lanes, public spaces in 2023

    The upgrades build on the city’s Open Streets program, which closes streets to vehicle traffic for use by pedestrians and cyclists, and its efforts to create the largest bike network in the U.S.

    By Nov. 23, 2022
  • Heavy machinery and workers working on the construction of a new viaduct along the north of downtown Miami, where new luxury housing complexes are being developed.
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    CHUYN via Getty Images

    Public pressure at meetings affects rezoning application approval: study

    An Urban Institute study found that Louisville, Kentucky, approved fewer rezoning applications in wealthy neighborhoods, even though developers submit more applications there, which was related to the level of public opposition.

    By Nov. 17, 2022
  • smart city, smart cities
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    jamesteohart via Getty Images

    The 10 most future-ready cities in North America: report

    Cities must invest more in digital and physical infrastructure to address today’s challenges but face several barriers, including a lack of public trust, a new report finds.

    By Nov. 15, 2022
  • Grass on a rooftop.
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    Maxvis via Getty Images

    White House endorses nature-based solutions in first US road map

    The Biden administration said this week’s release in conjunction with COP27 marks the first time the U.S. has developed a strategy to scale up green roofs, rain gardens, urban trees and other green infrastructure.

    By Nov. 10, 2022
  • The east side of the US Capitol in the early morning. Senate Chamber in the foreground.
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    drnadig via Getty Images

    With control of Congress unknown, clean energy advocates cheer state wins and press for climate action

    So far, it appears Republicans failed to pull off an anticipated “red wave” and Democrats outperformed expectations, analysts say.

    By Robert Walton • Nov. 9, 2022
  • A series of voting booths in a brightly lit room.
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    mrolands via Getty Images

    Climate funding wins big on state and local ballots

    Voters in many jurisdictions embraced spending on resilience projects, clean energy and other climate change mitigation efforts  — with one notable exception.

    By Updated Nov. 9, 2022
  • Macky Sall, Chairperson of the African Union, speaks during the Sharm El-Sheikh Climate Implementation Summit of the UNFCCC COP27 climate conference.
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    Sean Gallup via Getty Images

    COP27 to spotlight implementation, finance for climate action

    Even at the global stage, there could be insights on how to best go about decarbonizing U.S. cities from this month’s United Nations climate conference, experts say.

    By Nov. 7, 2022
  • Two people working in a small garden together.
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    perfectlab via Getty Images
    Q&A

    To foster community, connect residents to the outside

    Gardens and co-working spaces are among MBH Architects’ strategies for resident interaction.

    By Mary Salmonsen • Nov. 4, 2022
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    Rich Fury via Getty Images

    Taxpayer-funded football stadiums rarely pay off. So why do cities keep footing the bill?

    Sports economists warn U.S cities don’t reap enough economic benefits when stadiums are built with taxpayer money. Some city officials say community pride and shared identity are worth the investment.

    By Gaby Galvin • Nov. 3, 2022
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    Drew Angerer via Getty Images

    As part of new rat abatement program, NYC law targets construction sites

    The New York City Council passed the Rat Action Plan Thursday to help address the Big Apple’s notorious rodent problems.

    By Sebastian Obando • Oct. 28, 2022
  • Rain falls on a curb with grass.
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    4u4me via Getty Images

    Boston wants to use curb bump-outs to manage flooding, boost resilience

    Curb extensions must incorporate at least one of five green infrastructure features, from rain gardens to porous paving, to improve water management and reduce environmental impact, according to the proposal.

    By Oct. 28, 2022
  • An engineer checks the installation of  heat pump on a model house.
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    Leon Neal/Getty Images via Getty Images

    For equitable building electrification, philanthropy-backed fund puts communities in the driver’s seat

    Who designs the energy transition? As cities work to reduce building emissions and spur clean alternatives, the creators of the Equitable Building Electrification Fund believe that decision-making power needs to shift.

    By Oct. 26, 2022
  • Contractors removing interior shiplap from a circa 1920 homestead on the site of deconstruction contractor training in San Antonio.
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    Permission granted by City of San Antonio

    Affordable housing, zero waste efforts could benefit from San Antonio deconstruction policy

    One of the largest, fastest-growing U.S. cities is trying to use more of the materials it already has by requiring that some old buildings be deconstructed rather than demolished.

    By Oct. 25, 2022
  • Orlando regional digital twin on display.
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    Courtesy of City of Orlando

    What’s next with Orlando’s digital twin

    Users can experience the 800-square-mile digital twin in downtown Orlando or via virtual reality as the Orlando Economic Partnership seeks to market its potential to inform decisions around infrastructure and business development.

    By Oct. 21, 2022
  • Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot
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    Permission granted by City of Chicago

    Aiming for equitable building decarbonization, Chicago gets long-awaited working group guidance

    A green bank, a heat pump pilot and expanded energy benchmarking are among the strategies the group presented to address the 70% of greenhouse gas emissions that come from the Windy City's buildings.

    By Katie Pyzyk • Oct. 19, 2022
  • Asphalt art installation in Baltimore.
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    Courtesy of Kacie Mills

    7 urban asphalt art transformations in 2022: photos

    From Alaska to Mississippi, see some of the latest intersection redesign and street mural projects cities have completed after receiving Bloomberg Philanthropies grants.

    By Oct. 18, 2022
  • A photo of people dining outside.
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    Byron Smith/Stringer/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    NYC Meatpacking District vision aims to improve safety, mobility and business

    New bike lanes, improved traffic patterns, more green space and pedestrian plazas are some of the recommendations from the New York City Meatpacking District Management Association.

    By Kalena Thomhave • Oct. 17, 2022
  • Women in wheelchair needing assistance
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    baranozdemir via Getty Images

    Philadelphia agrees to install or fix 10,000 curb ramps in class-action lawsuit settlement

    The city will be required to hit 2,000-ramp milestones every three years, take service requests and provide status updates online in the settlement of the lawsuit advanced by Philadelphians with disabilities and others.

    By Oct. 14, 2022
  • Smoke rises from the skyscrapers along Chicago's lakefront.
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    Kamil Krzaczynski via Getty Images

    Chicago passes updated building energy code to support decarbonization

    Starting in November, new building designs must adhere to stronger energy-efficiency and electrification standards as the city seeks to mitigate one of its major sources of emissions.

    By Sept. 29, 2022
  • Los Angeles's downtown skyline enveloped in smog.
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    David McNew via Getty Images

    California could phase out gas heaters by 2030 to cut smog

    The home and building appliances are “an underappreciated driver of unhealthy air quality in California cities,” non-profit advocates say in a report Tuesday, as state regulators consider only allowing zero-emissions alternatives.

    By Sept. 20, 2022
  • XL Construction is erecting a mass timber office building for Google at Moffett Park in Sunnyvale, California
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    Courtesy of XL Construction

    150 years after the Great Chicago Fire, mass timber buildings are making a comeback

    Now equipped with fire-resistant technologies, a planned Chicago high-rise is among the latest building projects in the U.S. utilizing the carbon-sequestering building material.

    By Stephenie Overman • Sept. 16, 2022
  • An factory worker with an electric car motor on an assembly line.
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    Aranga87 via Getty Images

    Advanced mobility, mass timber projects chosen in $1B federal regional challenge

    The American Rescue Plan’s $1 billion Build Back Better Regional Challenge will support joint efforts to use mass timber to accelerate affordable housing, spur American manufacturing for advanced mobility, and much more.

    By Sept. 9, 2022