Tata - the Indian mega-conglomerate that launched the $2,000 car - has created a housing division which is building new apartments ranging from $7,800-$13,400 dollars outside Mumbai (pointer via Planetizen). Business Week's Prashant Gopal explains.
The New York Times asks artists how the recession is affecting their lives and work (h/t: Alison Kemper).
Over at Economix, Catherine Rampell points to this map from MapScroll which recreates the UN Human Development Index for U.S. states.
Stephen Walt spells out the advantages of tolerance, openness, and cosmopolitanism from the realist respective [thanks to Jon Rauch for the pointer). He goes to great pains to point out that he is talking about cosmopolitan openness not just ethnic assimilation.
It's clear that the economic crisis is having uneven impacts on different types of workers and different kinds of communities. Highly educated people and highly educated places are holding up much better than others. But among the most stable places in the current downturn are college towns.
The 2009 Child Well-Being Index examines the impact of the economic crisis on America's children.
Housing starts dipped to record lows in April. Just 357,000 single family homes were started last month, while total starts feel to 458,000 - an all-time record low. Calculated Risk charts the trend.
Here is a great interactive map of how stimulus dollars are being spent across the country. Lots of road construction and bridges are on the agenda. Click on the map for more details - you can mouse over the various cities and also drag 'n' drop to view by state.
Mark Thoma points to San Francisco Fed research on the lasting effects of the past decade's run-up in consumer debt and current "deleveraging" on the U.S. economy and American consumers.
While many restaurants and restaurant chains are getting killed by the economic downturn, P.F. Chang's is up, up, up according to Slate's Dan Gross: "P.F. Chang's China Bistro, whose two restaurant chains--P.F. Chang's and Pei Wei Asian Diner--are staples of upscale malls and mixed-use developments, said that same-store sales fell a bit but profits produced at its 350 outlets rose 38 percent from the first quarter of 2008. Operating margins--the holy grail of any business--at P.F. Chang's 190 stores rose from 12.8 percent to 14 percent, largely because of 'incremental operational improvement opportunities.' The stock has doubled since November."