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Nature Publishing Group;
Studies have shown that natural environments can enhance health and here we build upon that work by examining the associations between comprehensive greenspace metrics and health. We focused on a large urban population center (Toronto, Canada) and related the two domains by combining high-resolution satellite imagery and individual tree data from Toronto with questionnaire-based self-reports of general health perception, cardio-metabolic conditions and mental illnesses from the Ontario Health Study. Results from multiple regressions and multivariate canonical correlation analyses suggest that people who live in neighborhoods with a higher density of trees on their streets report significantly higher health perception and significantly less cardio-metabolic conditions (controlling for socio-economic and demographic factors). We find that having 10 more trees in a city block, on average, improves health perception in ways comparable to an increase in annual personal income of $10,000 and moving to a neighborhood with $10,000 higher median income or being 7 years younger. We also find that having 11 more trees in a city block, on average, decreases cardio-metabolic conditions in ways comparable to an increase in annual personal income of $20,000 and moving to a neighborhood with $20,000 higher median income or being 1.4 years younger.
National Zero Waste Council;
Founded on a disruptive vision to transform consumption in society, the Toronto Tool Library is a non-profit social enterprise that lends specialized tools to community members. The Tool Library's members borrow tools in the same way they would borrow a library book. The Tool Library has over 3,000 tools available for loan including home repair, construction and renovation, gardening and landscaping, and bicycle repair tools. The tools range from simple screw drivers and drills, to table saws, welding equipment, power generators. Four3-D printers and a laser cutter are available for use onsite. It took less than a year for the Tool Library to move from an idea to its grand opening.The library is a money- and space-saving alternative to ownership. Tool sharing reduces consumption and waste. The philosophy of the library – and what sets it apart as a social enterprise – is that it is not trying to maximize profit but trying to maximize membership and access.
Commissioned by McKnight, Jay Walljasper's latest essay captures valuable lessons from Seattle, Denver, and Toronto — regions that serve as both competition and inspiration for Minneapolis-St. Paul.
North York Community House;
"DIY: Immigrant Entrepreneurs are Doing It for Themselves" is a study funded by Metcalf Foundation, and produced by North York Community House in partnership with Public Interest. Findings of this study are based on a review of literature on immigrant needs, and models to support immigrant entrepreneurs, as well as interviews with 100 immigrants entrepreneurs and several service providers in this area. The research indicates that increasingly, immigrants are starting small businesses due to challenges they face finding traditional employment, as well as to supplement their household income. This is a highly diverse group of motivated individuals who require support tailored to their gender, background and previous business experience. Strong mentors and networks are shown to be instrumental supports -- an important finding for service providers who offer programs designed to help immigrant entrepreneurs succeed.
Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance;
Who is in charge of the waterfront? Everybody and nobody. The scramble of commissions and task forces in the wake of Superstorm Sandy brought the challenge of waterfront governance into sharp relief. With literally dozens of city, state, and federal agencies regulating and protecting New York Harbor and the regional waterfront, it is high time to construct a new regime that will manage our waterways and shorelines holistically, efficiently, and with dedicated foresight. We are developing a 21st century waterfront, with great opportunities and grave challenges for our coastal city. We need governance to match.
As in New York, cities from around the world are reinventing their waterfronts. From Seattle to Sydney, other waterfront cities can provide valuable examples and innovative models for New York. This paper distills some of these examples into case studies meant to inform the discussion on how to improve waterfront governance in New York City. It concludes with the recommendation that a Department of the Waterfront is necessary to realize the economic benefi ts of a revitalized waterfront, to capture the cost savings from better coordination and planning, and to implement the city's critical goals for protecting its waterfront.
Democracy Collaborative at the University of Maryland, The;
This Democracy Collaborative report provides the first comprehensive survey of community wealth building institutions in the green economy. Featuring ten cases, the report identifies how policy and philanthropy can build on these examples to create "green jobs you can own."