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    A look at urban issues in the Bay Area and beyond

10 Pilot Projects to Boost the Bay Area Economy

January 30, 2014 By Egon Terplan, Regional Planning Director
From President Obama’s State of the Union speech to local policy initiatives, there’s been a lot of attention lately on wage inequality and the shrinking middle class. As part of a major SPUR initiative, a group of Bay Area pilot projects will tackle these issues head on.
Canned goods being delivered at a food bank

Ending Hunger in San Francisco by 2020

January 28, 2014 By Molly Schmidt and Eli Zigas
While San Francisco is a city that celebrates food, it's also home to many who struggle to get three complete meals a day. Between 100,000 and 225,000 residents have incomes that put them at risk of food insecurity. Two new reports show that even with collaboration among government agencies, nonprofits and the private sector, there are still many hurdles to overcome in addressing food insecurity.

Tools to Fight Drought

January 15, 2014 By Laura Tam, Sustainable Development Policy Director
2013 was one of the driest years on record, and 2014 is not off to a great start either. As we head into a third dry year, water conservation is more important than ever — and so is preparing for future uncertainty in our water supply by investing in reliable, sustainable supplies, as recommended in SPUR's report Future-Proof Water.

Lease Deals Point to Positive Signs for Downtown San Jose

December 11, 2013 By María Gabriela Huertas Díaz
Two big lease deals in downtown San Jose indicate that the city center’s underappreciated assets may be proving attractive to those seeking more urban workplaces in Silicon Valley. Why did these two tenants choose downtown over other nearby competitors? Four reasons: access to transit, urban amenities, real estate costs and a responsive government.

Season's Greetings: A Special Message From SPUR

December 3, 2013
Now is a perfect time to take stock of all the great things that have happened this year, with your help. We hope you will consider making a contribution to SPUR at this year end. Here’s how you can help.

A Vision for the Future of School Meals in SF

December 2, 2013 By Eli Zigas, Food Systems and Urban Agriculture Program Manager
San Francisco’s school meals could look quite a bit different in the coming years. That’s the overarching theme of a report that the San Francisco Unified School District released in September, laying out a long-term vision for the future of the district's school meals program, which currently serves 22,000 lunches and 5,500 breakfasts each day.

Nimble Ways to Remake City Streets

November 13, 2013 By Michael King and Jeffrey Tumlin
Streets are different than highways, yet the United States delegates authority for all roadway design to a private nonprofit made up largely of highway engineers. And unfortunately, many of the principles that make for safe highways make for dangerous, dysfunctional urban streets. But a new manual released this fall, the Urban Street Design Guide , could change all this.

Seeking Prosperity: Middle-Wage Job Opportunities in the Bay Area

November 5, 2013 By Egon Terplan and Imron Bhatti
A little over one-third of the Bay Area workforce earns $18 per hour or less . Given the high cost of living in the Bay Area, it’s important to move many of these workers to higher paying jobs. This posts looks at what these jobs are, how many of them there will be in the coming years, and the skills and education levels they require.

2013 Silver SPUR: How Tom Layton Takes Philanthropy a Step Further

October 30, 2013
Thomas C. Layton has been a dedicated philanthropic leader, seeding and supporting positive social change for almost four decades. As the president of The Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation since 1975, Layton has built a track record of innovative and risk-taking grant-making that has served some of the Bay Area's most esteemed leaders, movements and institutions in their nascent stages. His leadership in the philanthropic community, encouraging foundations to courageously support the policy and advocacy work of their grantees, has made him one of the most respected leaders in the field. Prior to joining to the foundation, he was a business executive and, later, the vice president and national director of the Coro Foundation. Learn about our other 2013 Silver SPUR honorees: How Dan Solomon Reimagines Urban Neighborhoods >> How Chief Judge Karen Clopton Brings Transparency to Government >> How Art Torres Speaks for the Disadvantaged >>

2013 Silver SPUR: How Dan Solomon Reimagines Urban Neighborhoods

October 30, 2013
Daniel Solomon, FAIA is an architect and urban designer whose career combines professional practice with teaching and writing. His commitment to the construction and reconstruction of urban neighborhoods extends beyond his renowned project work; he is a co-founder of the Congress for the New Urbanism and a passionate spokesman for the cause of the city. Solomon’s work as a partner in the Mithun | Solomon San Francisco office — including the LEED Platinum David Brower Center in Berkeley and the redevelopment of San Francisco’s Hunters View neighborhood — exemplify his commitment to the evolution of community design. He is professor emeritus at UC Berkeley and Kea Distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland, and has published many articles and three books. Learn about our other 2013 Silver SPUR honorees: How Art Torres Speaks for the Disadvantaged >> How Chief Judge Karen Clopton Brings Transparency to Government >> How Tom Layton...

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