Future of cities

A special four-part series from The Bond Buyer

The coronavirus pandemic, budgetary strain, civil unrest, and stay-at-home mandates have dramatically altered the landscape for our nation’s cities. This multi-platform series from The Bond Buyer examines this in four parts, each segment focusing on a different aspect of how life in and the finances of America’s cities could be altered.

We explore how cities of all sizes are being impacted by outmigration, and where the greatest long-term risks lie; the hard realities and intangibles of the so-called gathering economy – conventions, conferences, theater, sports and arts; how many businesses are at an inflection point with urban office space; and problems that lie ahead and how resilience has taken on a new meaning.

For each, we dig in on the problems and discuss potential solutions with a written story and a companion podcast. The series also includes a kickoff video discussion spanning all four topics. Browse this page for all our Future of Cities content.

The greatest risks and potential for permanent change reside in the nation’s largest cities, ones with an outsized influence over its economy and finances.
The COVID-19 pandemic has pummeled the segments of the American economy tied to public gatherings. For the cities and industries most reliant on bringing people together, adaptation and perseverance will be critical.
Even before COVID-19, urban economists and planners were pointing to a trend of suburbanization of job growth. That could now accelerate, with employers at an inflection point to assess their future needs.
The coronavirus pandemic was something no local government could have anticipated. But it’s also raising serious concerns about cities’ preparedness for other difficult-to-predict challenges.
Former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros and Regional Plan Association president Tom Wright join The Bond Buyer for a discussion on the ways life and work in American cities are being altered by the pandemic — and future challenges it illuminates.