The Economy

I live in a city that’s pretty screwed up. In many ways. But last month a cavalry rode into town with sabers drawn and bugle blaring, and our salvation may be at hand.

In land use planning there is no official category termed “screwed up city” but it fits.

I grew up – and returned

Two interesting things happened today. The first is obviously related to land use and the second is . . . obviously related to land use.

First, this morning the N.C. Senate Commerce Committee unanimously approved a “PCS” (proposed committee substitute) for the Board of Adjustment bill that unanimously passed the House 119-0. The changes are

             On a few occasions I’ve used this blog to comment on the economy that undergirds land development and growth.  Two years ago, I woke up on New Year’s Day and, reflecting on the economic carnage we all had witnessed during 2009, wrote a post that captured what it felt like to have been in a

            Local and state governments depend on economic growth to pay for government services, and very little growth occurs without someone buying or renting real estate.  Our collective real estate markets, therefore, are bellwethers for the nation’s economic health and our communities’ growth patterns.  Here’s where we’re trending.

             Acknowledging, of course, that today’s weather doesn’t establish

            Government’s ability to pull us out of a recession through increased spending was, to some degree, a major issue in recent state and federal races.  Economists battle over the data.  Citizens often don’t understand or care about the data, but they duke it out at the polls nonetheless.

            Whichever position you take, I couldn’t help

I recently began a series of interviews of individuals involved in land use and government, using their experiences as windows into the evolving world of land planning and economic development.  Today’s conversation is with Alan Weidt, owner of Carolina Commercial Realty, who works throughout the Triad region, focusing on restaurants, retail, furniture showrooms and some

In 2008 our economic ship’s engines faltered before the ship itself started to list and then to sink. Local and state government agencies joined hands with the development community to devise an interesting floatation device, eventually termed, in governmental prose, “The Permit Extension Act of 2009.”

The Extension Act, essentially, stopped the earth from spinning

            Economists speaking to national media tend to translate our evolving economic situation in macro terms using national data and statistics when the best views of the nation’s economy are seen at street level.  I had a good street level view this past week when I traveled to Savannah to speak to the annual meeting of

            Today’s blog post is the first in a series of glimpses and insights into land use and the economy from the perspective of citizens who are experts in their field.  In coming months you will hear from developers, planners, mayors, environmentalists, builders and others.

            John Davenport owns Winston-Salem-based Davenport Transportation Consulting, a firm that now