Weekly Urban News Update
November 16, 2018
In This Update: 
IHC Global Event: Latin America's Housing Success and Challenges
Land Rights Law Passes in Liberia
Who Can Afford Affordable Housing in New Zealand?
Adopt-A-Student in Milan
Ebola Spreads in Butembo and Beni
Urban Sprawl and Dengue Fever
IHC Spotlight Event: Next City Presents: "The Divided City"
In the News and Around the Web
This Week in Photos

IHC  Global Event: 
Latin America's Housing Successes and Challenges
This past Tuesday, I HC Global and Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) were pl eased to host a lively discussion on Housing Successes and Challenges in Latin America. IHC Global Senior Technical Advisor Blair Ruble (Distinguished Fellow, Woodrow Wilson Center) moderated a panel with  Maximiliano Brandt (Director, Institutional Development, HFHI), Ariel Cano (President, Board of HFHI Mexico), and Gustavo Gutierrez-L ee (Executive Director HFHI Mexico). The delegation stated that the problem of housing quality, rather than lack of housing, stands at the core of Mexico's housing challenges.   Dr. Ruble praised the speakers' "conceptual flexibility" as they asserted the need to re-imagine strategies of financial support.  The event recording is available on our Facebook page  here
Property Rights

Land Rights Law Passes in Liberia
In September, Liberia passed the Land Rights bill to protect rural landowner communities from historical injustices. The bill recognizes the customary laws, previously ignored by the government, which appropriated mass amounts of land for state ownership during the past 50 years.  Land Portal explains why a nation-wide legal education campaign, in both rural and urban contexts. R ead more here .
Affordable Housing
 
Who Can Afford Affordable Housing in New Zealand?
A new government housing program in New Zealand has raised questions about who can afford affordable housing. KiwiBuild promises to give young people the chance to buy property for a fixed sum and shut out investors who drive up prices. Critics point out that this largely benefits the young middle class- without government subsidies, large numbers of people cannot afford the promised housing. Office worker Daniel Robson says: "Building more houses is good, but it doesn't help me get into a house when it costs the same as other properties in the area." Read more here.

Adopt-A-Student in Milan
Association MegliaMilano has pioneered an innovative housing solution in Milan. Faced with an increasing number of aging seniors living alone and a shortage of affordable housing for students in Milano, MegliaMilano proposed its Adopt a Student program. The program promotes senior and student cohabitation. Students reimburse their hosts approximately 250-280 euros a month, while offering them valuable companionship. Dora Grazzini (83) and Maria Urbani (26) are thrilled with their housing situation: Grazzini says of Urbani: "If I could, I would keep her with me forever."  Read more  here .
Urban Health
 
Ebola Spreads in Butembo and Beni
The DRC is suffering its worst urban Ebola outbreak in its history, with 200 deaths and 329 reported cases. The heavy populated cities of Butembo and Beni have especially born the brunt of the outbreak. Ballooning populations, developing infrastructure, and displacement by destabilizing political violence has presented a "cruel irony" according to Nahid Bhadelia, medical director of Boston Medical Center's Special Pathogens Unit. "Better roads and improved connectivity of people also make it easier for the disease to travel, says Bhadelia."  Read more  here .

Urban Sprawl and Dengue Fever
Dengue fever cases have risen from 24,500 to 40,500 in the last decade, largely due to expansion of "unplanned megacities." Dr. Bobby Reiner, an author of a new Global Burden of Disease study  cites impoverished and densely packed urban areas for the spread of the disease. Screenless windows, lack of air conditioning, and standing water provide the perfect environment for the disease to spread, exacerbated by continuous mass migration into urban areas. More research needs to be done, says Dr. Reiner, especially developing a more perfect dengue vaccine.  Read more  here .

IHC Spotlight Event
Next City: "The Divided City: Poverty and Prosperity in Urban America"
IHC member organization Next City will host an online seminar with author Alan Mallach. His new book "The Divided City," asks who really benefits from urban revival and offers strategies to foster greater equality and opportunity. Find more information here.
November 19, 2018 at 1pm

In the News and Around the Web
  • Beirut's Trash Crisis Karim Chehayeb   reminds us that Beirut's trash crisis drags on.  
  • The Pink Transit Tax: Women in New York City spend on average up to $100 more on transportation each month for safety reasons.
  • Baltimore Bans Water Privatization: Baltimore voters ban water privatization.
  • Word of the Year: Single-Use: A number of cities and corporations have cracked down on single-use plastics- Collins dictionary has named "single-use" its word of the year.
This Week in Photos
  • California FiresCityLab highlightshow California fires are decimating California cities. 
  • Detroit, Lost and FoundThe Guardian shows a glimpse of Detroit's past.
  • Mini-Living in Beijing: China House Vision conceives urban cabins to combat over-crowded Chinese cities.
A mini-living urban cabin designed for Beijing
(Photo cred: KOMO News )
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