Remembering the Designer Who Made Our Cities More Colorful

The graphic designer Deborah Sussman died at the age of 83 this week, leaving behind a technicolor legacy. She was perhaps most famous for designing the graphics and signage for the 1984 Summer Olympics, which transformed Los Angeles into a dazzling playground of magenta and teal. But Sussman also left her mark on… » 8/22/14 9:57am Today 9:57am

9 Images of How Kids Played Before Modern Playgrounds Existed

"Playground." The word evokes visions of brightly colored jungle gyms and swing-sets, fenced-off or otherwise protected from dangers of the surrounding real world. But before these kinds of site-specific joy zones, kids kept busy: Playing. On the ground. " Reinventing the Square" is an exhibition that looks at the… » 8/22/14 9:00am Today 9:00am

Our Hot, Bright Cities Are Spawning Gigantic Spiders

File this one under: Oh HELL no. While we know that our ever-industrializing lifestyles make survival tough for animals like birds and mountain lions, in at least one case urbanization is helping a species to thrive. Thanks to the artificial conditions we create, our cities are growing ultrafertile megaspiders. » 8/20/14 4:15pm Wednesday 4:15pm

Ferguson Police Will Finally Get the One Device They Really Need

In a statement today, Ferguson's police department announced that it is committed to buying vest cameras for its officers. When it finally happens, it'll be a great first step. And it'll happen even faster if we ditch the bloated, expensive wearable cam tech cops use today for something accessible to every U.S.… » 8/19/14 4:19pm Tuesday 4:19pm

The World's Most Expensive Hallway Is Under New York City

The exorbitant costs of the new World Trade Center Transportation Hub have been well-reported: the station cost $4 BILLION DOLLARS. New Yorkers can already experience one element of the pricey hub, a walkway under West Street. And if calculations are correct, this 600-foot corridor is the most expensive hallway on the… » 8/19/14 1:06pm Tuesday 1:06pm

Watch How Bolivia Built the World's Longest Urban Cable Car System

In most parts of the world, cable cars are relegated to ski areas or amusement parks. But in South America, cities use the gondolas to navigate undulating terrain as public transportation. This fall, two more lines will open in Bolivia's La Paz-El Alto network, making it the longest urban cable car system in the world. » 8/18/14 12:51pm Monday 12:51pm

There's a Skate Park In an Old Tunnel Under London, And You Can Visit

Amongst the abandoned diggers, unexploded bombs, and Medieval bodies, a labyrinth of Tube tracks—both fully functional and obsolete—wind beneath the streets of London. Last week the city got a whole new subterranean social scene at the House of Vans, a series of five disused tunnels outfitted with bars, a diner,… » 8/13/14 8:25pm 8/13/14 8:25pm

Americans Have Taken 23 Million Bike Share Rides and No One Has Died

With 36 cities across the country now hosting their own systems, bike share is almost becoming an American institution. According to a new report, it's estimated that Americans have taken 23 million rides since 2007 (wow!), but here's the most amazing part: Not a single death has been attributed to a bike share system… » 8/12/14 11:48am 8/12/14 11:48am

Toxic Algae, Razor Blades, Olympics: What's Ruining Our Cities This Week

Lake Erie turned an eerie shade of green due to a toxic algae bloom, steering Toledo away from the taps. Someone putting razor blades in parking meters is making New Jersey residents wary. And 10 years later, poor Athens is still paying the price for hosting the Olympics. It's What's Ruining Our Cities. » 8/10/14 2:00pm 8/10/14 2:00pm

Get a Rare Peek at Everyday Life In North Korea From a New Timelapse

Although we have a pretty good idea of what life is like in North Korea, most of what we actually see comes from carefully controlled images released by the government. "Enter Pyongyang" is an incredibly beautiful video that was shot by a Beijing-based tour company, and it might give us the most honest look yet at the… » 8/08/14 6:20pm 8/08/14 6:20pm

The Desolate State of Athens Olympic Venues 10 Years Later

Ten years ago this week, the Summer Olympics triumphantly returned to their historic home with splashy opening ceremonies in Athens, Greece. Unfortunately, the glory did not last after the Games. While the dilapidated state of Athens' venues post-Games has been well-documented, new photos taken this week show just how… » 8/07/14 6:40pm 8/07/14 6:40pm

Every City Should Give Seniors a Card That Extends the Crosswalk Time

We've all seen what happens when someone can't cross the street in the allotted signal time—the pedestrian gets frustrated and drivers get mad. A program in Singapore lets seniors swipe a card at an intersection so the signal will give them extra time to cross. It's a smart solution to a problem that's increasingly… » 8/07/14 1:43pm 8/07/14 1:43pm

Even Scientists Are Using Google Street View to Measure Gentrification

Google Street View is an excellent way to watch your neighborhood change. In fact, we've conducted our own informal surveys of urban transformation in Detroit, San Francisco, and Brooklyn. While our investigations were based on casual observation, now a pair of sociologists from Harvard are using Google Street View… » 8/06/14 11:00am 8/06/14 11:00am

I Prefer Watching These Heavily Slurred Versions of American History

Drunk History is in many ways the best show on television at the moment. You get the LOLs of absurdist sketch comedy while arming yourself with enough History Channel-quality Fun Facts™ to make you sound smart the next day. At the same time, it feels like hosting a party in your living room—one that inevitably ends… » 8/04/14 8:00pm 8/04/14 8:00pm