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    A look at urban issues in the Bay Area and beyond

2015 Good Government Awards: Jimmy Chiu's SFO Runway Safety Program

March 17, 2015
Jimmy Chiu , Airport Infrastructure Program Director, led both design and construction efforts for the successful implementation of FAA-required runway safety areas at San Francisco International Airport ( SFO ). Chiu worked to build consensus among the FAA, airlines and airport operations staff to ensure the project would be completed by the December 2015 federal deadline.

2015 Good Government Awards: Paula Kehoe's Water Supply Diversification Programs

March 17, 2015
Paula Kehoe oversees pivotal water conservation and water resource diversification programs for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission . With California’s severe drought conditions, the work of the Water Resource Division, led by Kehoe , is particularly critical. Kehoe directed the development of new strategies for water supply diversification through non-potable supplies.

What Does SJ’s City Hall Plaza Need to Become a Great Urban Space?

March 4, 2015 by Alyssa Kies
Building an iconic, future-oriented city hall in downtown San Jose was a leap toward urbanity. But to truly reap the rewards of density will require more work. Gehl Studio and the Tech Museum of Innovation partnered to survey the existing conditions of the plaza, test a series of prototypes and provide recommendations for animating the space.

Prosperity and Opportunity in the Bay Area’s Innovation Economy

March 2, 2015 By Egon Terplan and Kathryn Mullins
The Bay Area’s “innovation economy” — i.e., the high-tech sector — is thriving. Though longtime observers are right to wonder when the next crash will happen, the region’s current boom has some fundamental qualities that hint prosperity will continue. This time of expansion is an opportunity to acknowledge some of the challenges associated with economic growth.
Garden to Table's Taylor Street Farm in San Jose.

Urban Ag Incentive Proposals Spread in California

February 25, 2015 By Eli Zigas, Food and Agriculture Policy Director
The idea of urban agriculture incentive zones has begun to spread within California. On February 10, both the City of Sacramento and Santa Clara County took official steps toward creating zones that would allow landowners to receive a property tax reduction in exchange for committing their land to urban gardening or farming for at least five years.

Top Analysts Predict Another Year of Growth for SF Economy

February 20, 2015 By Jennifer Warburg
Each February, SPUR’s Municipal Fiscal Advisory Committee brings together top economists and city staff to forecast what San Francisco’s economy will do in the year ahead. The expertise of independent economists and experts from key sectors — including real estate, hospitality and retail — helps the city develop revenue projections for the upcoming fiscal year. Here’s a look at what they see ahead.

What San Francisco Needs to Do About Housing Affordability

February 17, 2015 By Kristy Wang, Community Planning Policy Director
Last week the San Francisco Planning Commission adopted the 2014 Housing Element. SPUR supports the housing element, but we believe the city needs to do much more to address the housing deficit. At a time when San Francisco is experiencing growth in jobs and residents, the city is not planning, approving and building enough housing. We have five suggestions for how to get things moving.

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