Free Cities

Business & Economics

Spencer Klavan – How to Save the West

Our podcast guest this week is fellow podcaster Spencer Klavan, host of the podcast “The American Mind.”


Read about debate over SB 9 and 10

Misguided fear and loathing over relaxed zoning rules

SB 9 essentially eliminated single-family-only zoning by allowing property owners – on a “by right” basis that avoids subjective local reviews – to subdivide their single-family properties and build additional units on the land provided it meets all the pre-existing local setback and land-use conditions. It would allow up to …


Read exclusive book excerpt

Cities in Crisis: How to fix municipal government budgeting

Read an excerpt from The Municipal Financial Crisis: A Framework for Understanding and Fixing Government Budgeting by Mark Moses (reprinted with permission). There was an alleged exchange in the 1950s between golfing great Sam Snead and baseball legend Ted Williams regarding which sport is more challenging. Ted pointed out that a …


CA has over one million victims...

The Mythical Crime Reduction Dividend

This week in the opinion pages of the Orange County Register, UC Santa Cruz Professor Craig Haney and Prosecutors Alliance of California founder Christine DeBerry made the case for further closings in California’s prison system. Using the tired trope of “mass incarceration,” they declare that California has been squandering the …


California’s Train Drain

It’s an interesting question: Will California’s high-speed rail make its first run before BART trains make their last? Actually, it’s a tricky question. The bullet train might never run. We’ve chronicled the troubles that have bedeviled the high-speed rail project, most recently when we reported on its financial problems. The …


Urban Ag Promotes Healthy Food, Thriving Gardens

Urban Ag Promotes Healthy Food, Thriving Gardens MARCH 27, 2023 Watch as Steven Greenhut of the Free Cities Center tours City Slicker Farms in Oakland, an urban agriculture program that promotes access to healthy food, thriving gardens and urban green spaces.


How Eminent Domain Obliterated the Character of Cities

No city can possibly express its character – the many urban quirks and idiosyncrasies, as well as the strangely appealing grittiness and shining luxury that often coexist side-by-side – when government planners use the bulldozer to “improve” cities. Writing about the “wave of urban renewal that swept the world in …


Urban gentrification beats alternative of deterioration

Of all places, Houston – famous for its minimal zoning – now faces a “gentrification” crisis

Free Cities

PRI Sacramento Policy Conference – Reimagining Our Cities

This is the final podcast recording of PRI’s Annual Sacramento Policy Conference.  The theme of this panel discussion is “Reimagining Our Cities.” 


Crime in Oakland – More Mass Victimization

Criminals in Alameda County just caught a break. Newly elected District Attorney Pamela Price has issued a draft memorandum to her staff requiring them to seek probation in nearly all felony cases with the exception of murder and some sex crimes involving children.   Further, it requires that more severe …

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