Birds versus buildings: Rural structures pose greater relative threat than urban ones

Birds versus buildings: Rural structures pose greater relative threat than urban ones

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About one billion birds are killed every year when they unwittingly fly into human-made objects such as buildings with reflective windows. Such collisions are the largest unintended human cause of bird deaths worldwide — and they are a serious concern for conservationists.

A new paper published in June in the journal Biological Conservation finds that, as one might suspect, smaller buildings cause fewer bird deaths than do bigger buildings. But the research...

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There’s a map for that

There’s a map for that

Wikimedia Commons: Public Domain: USGS

If you own a cell phone or a mobile device you’re likely creating data that could be mapped. “When you add a Yelp review or geotag a tweet you’re actually volunteering geographic information, you are mapping,” said UW Tacoma Assistant Professor Britta Ricker. Most of us use maps to determine our location, to find out how to get from point A to point B. Ricker, who teaches in the university...

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Does commercial zoning increase neighborhood crime?

Does commercial zoning increase neighborhood crime?

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In the run-up to the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump told The New York Times that America’s urban centers are some of the “most dangerous,” crime-filled places in the world. Even though experts were quick to point out that violent crime has actually declined in all but a handful of America’s largest cities and urban areas, the view of cities as dense, dirty, and dangerous and suburbs as spread out, pastoral,...

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MetroLab to hold annual summit in Atlanta

MetroLab Network—a national network of 40 city-university partnerships focused on urban innovation—will be hosting their Annual Summit in Atlanta from September 13-15 (in partnership with the City of Atlanta and Georgia Tech). The Summit will bring together leaders from local government, universities, industry and non-profit and is an opportunity to share, discuss, and present on the impact of data, analytics, and technology on local government. Martin O’Malley (Former Governor of Maryland) and...

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As metro areas grow, whites move farther from the city center

As metro areas grow, whites move farther from the city center

CC0 Public Domain: Pixabay: SaddleRoad

In the middle of the 20th century, cities began to change. The popularity of the automobile and the construction of interstate highways fueled the growth of suburbs, while discriminatory housing policies segregated neighborhoods and helped create the phenomenon of “white flight” away from downtowns.

Decades later, the average white person still lives farther from the city center than the average person of color, a University of Washington researcher says, even with...

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The biggest cliché in tech is hurting cities

The biggest cliché in tech is hurting cities

CC BY-ND 2.0: Flickr: Marc Van dir Chijs

If you don’t live in Silicon Valley, chances are you live in its close relative: “the next Silicon Valley.” The label has been slapped with abandon on towns, cities, regions, or sometimes entire countries. All it takes is an uptick in job growth, an influx of startups, or a new coding bootcamp for the cliche to come roaring into headlines and motivational speeches.

In 2008, Margaret O’Mara developed an...

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Partnership with CMMB launches new center on smart, connected communities

China Multimedia Mobile Broadcasting - Vision (CMMB) has awarded the University of Washington Department of Electrical Engineering (UW EE) a $1.5 million gift to establish a new research center. The CMMB Vision-UW Center on Satellite Multimedia and Connected Vehicles will focus on the development of the next generation of smart cars and ubiquitous connectivity.

“UW EE is dedicated to the advancement of smart cities,” UW Department of Electrical Engineering Professor and...

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How a rising minimum wage affects jobs in Seattle

Three years ago, Seattle became one of the first jurisdictions in the nation to embrace a $15-an-hour minimum wage, to be phased in over several years. Over the past week, two studies have purported to demonstrate the effects of the first stages of that increase — but with diverging results.

Mark C. Long, professor in the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance, shares his perspective on the issue.

Continue...

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What the bond between homeless people and their pets demonstrates about compassion

What the bond between homeless people and their pets demonstrates about compassion

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A video camera captures an interview with a man named Spirit, who relaxes in an outdoor plaza on a sunny afternoon. Of his nearby service dogs, Kyya and Miniaga, he says, “They mean everything to me, and I mean everything to them.”In another video, three sweater-clad dogs scamper around a Los Angeles park, while their companion, Judie, tells their backstory. And in still another clip, Myra races her spaniel mix, Prince,...

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Lake Union building earns awards for energy savings

Lake Union building earns awards for energy savings

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Henbart LLC announced recently that a year-long study led by the University of Washington’s Integrated Design Lab confirmed that upgrading to View® Dynamic Glass technology in the Lake Union Building significantly saved energy and improved the tenant experience. The report verified annual energy savings of 17.7 percent or 351,604 kWh – roughly $28,000 a year or enough electricity to power 33 homes. The Lake Union Building is a 45-year old building located at 1700 Westlake Avenue N. along...

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American poverty is moving to the suburbs

American poverty is moving to the suburbs

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In his inaugural address, US president Donald Trump listed out the problems he saw in a declining America. At the top of his list: “Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities.” It was not the first time Trump had spoken of urban poverty. “Our inner cities are a disaster,” Trump said in the third presidential debate of 2016. “You get shot walking to the store. They have...

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Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which creates less carbon pollution?

Delivering packages with drones can reduce carbon dioxide emissions in certain circumstances as compared to truck deliveries, a new study from University of Washington transportation engineers finds. In a paper to be published in an upcoming issue of Transportation Research Part D, researchers found that drones tend to have carbon dioxide emissions advantages over trucks when the drones don’t have to fly very far to their destinations or when a delivery route has...

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To reach Auburn’s island of homelessness, cross this log

To reach Auburn’s island of homelessness, cross this log

Wikimedia commons: Joe Mabel: GNU Free Documentation License

That feeling – that investment in services and subsidized housing leads to more homelessness – is a myth, said Lia Musumeci. She’s a University of Washington student who’s working with Auburn on homelessness issues. The project is part of a larger initiative, Livable City Year, a UW program partnering with Auburn to help it as it grows. Musumeci said if Auburn were the only community trying to improve its services, then it...

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New Seattle seawall aims to improve waterfront salmon habitat

New Seattle seawall aims to improve waterfront salmon habitat

CC BY-SA 2.0: Flickr: HJ_west

Seattle’s new $410 million downtown waterfront is also acting as a huge science experiment.If you walk the area from Colman Dock to the Seattle Aquarium, you’d notice glass panels lining the sidewalk.“I thought it was just something to make the pier pretty,” said Emily Fuller, who visiting Seattle with her family.

The panels actually form a light-penetrating sidewalk to make the waterfront more fish-friendly, specifically salmon coming...

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Your neighborhood may be driving you to drink: study

A new study shows that living in poor, “disorganized” neighborhoods matters more when looking at how much alcohol a person drinks than their proximity to bars or stores that sell booze.

The link between poverty and alcoholism is established. But the new research out of the University of Washington throws quality of life into the mix.

“Is there something about the neighborhood itself that can lead to problems...

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