Among U.S. cities with populations of over 30,000, only 20 percent of mayors are women. A 2015 report by the American Planning Association not only notes the lack of gender diversity in urban planning careers—the field is 42 percent female—but also the fact that women are more likely to be affected by urban affordability issues: Up to three-quarters of households living in public housing are solely headed by females.

If the sea rises by six feet by the end of the century, more than 600 communities would experience chronic inundation, including more than 50 urban centers from Oakland to Miami to boroughs of New York City... Under this scenario, damages could significantly start to really rack up. The real estate service Zillow predicts that if tides rise by six feet, nearly 300 cities in the nation would lose at least half of their housing stock.

Without really good public transportation, it's very difficult to deal with inequality ... Transportation is about more than just moving people from point A to point B. It’s also a system that can either limit or expand the opportunities available to people based on where they live. In many cities, the areas with the shoddiest access to public transit are the most impoverished—and the lack of investment leaves many Americans without easy access to jobs, goods, and services.

Not only did its passage [Prop13] gut basic services the state used to excel at, like education, but it also turned real estate into the primary way Californians accrued and preserved personal wealth. If you bought a cheap house in the 1970s in the Bay Area, today it’s a gold mine—and you are disincentivized from doing anything that would reduce its value, like, say, allowing an apartment building to be built anywhere within view.

Water companies are not obliged to supply all the water that people would use if it were free, nor are power companies expected to provide all the free electricity that customers might want. But many cities try to provide enough spaces to meet the demand for free parking, even at peak times.

California's housing-supply slump has driven home prices to levels unseen since 2007, before the dawn of the financial crisis. The current median home value in California is just under $490,000, up nearly 7% from this time last year and more than twice the national median. Homeownership in the state is at a 70-year low ... And cities that were once considered the West's more affordable big markets, like Denver, Portland, and Seattle, are now experiencing some of the fastest-rising rents

Smart stoplight systems, formally known as adaptive traffic signals, allow stoplights to memorize traffic patterns, communicate with each other and adjust the timing of green and red lights to improve traffic flow ... Using technology to boost traffic flow is much less expensive than widening roads or building transit lines, and those solutions typically face environmental hurdles and community backlash.

The report calculates that bus operators in the U.S. spend a cumulative six million hours waiting at bus stops each year, which in turn costs agencies an estimated $700 million. The delays make sense. If 20 people are waiting to board a bus at a popular stop and it takes each person five to nine seconds, that adds up to over three minutes of waiting. Multiplied over a whole route, it totals to significant delay.

Always short of water, Mexico City keeps drilling deeper for more, weakening the ancient clay lake beds on which the Aztecs first built much of the city, causing it to crumble even further. It is a cycle made worse by climate change. More heat and drought mean more evaporation and yet more demand for water, adding pressure to tap distant reservoirs at staggering costs or further drain underground aquifers and hasten the city’s collapse.

Last year saw the second highest number of billion-dollar disasters since 1980: 15 events that caused 138 fatalities and $46 billion in losses. But what’s particularly troubling is the number of two particular types of disasters: 2016 saw four inland flood events and eight severe storm events, more than any year on record. Both types of events have greatly increased in frequency over the last decade.