Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Unaffordable housing, urban heat islands, and Friday Cheers

Good morning, RVA! It's 68 °F, and it’s another day with highs in the 90s. Temperatures should drop about 20 degrees over the weekend, though!

Water cooler

Richmond Police are reporting a murder that took place on Wednesday morning at the 2000 block of Creighton Road. Police arrived at the scene and found Lorenzo L. Dinkins, 26, shot to death.

RPD are also upgrading a death investigation from last year to a murder. On October 25th, Barbara A. Brown, 25, was found unresponsive in her residence at the 4200 block of Old Brook Road; she would later die at a hospital. Police have arrested a suspect.

Does Richmond have an affordable housing crisis? I dunno, but this quote from a realtor stresses me out: “Almost anything under $300,000 is a hot commodity.” The RTD’s Carol Hazard looks at Richmond’s housing market, and my takeaway is that we need to build more, denser housing ASAP. If you don’t believe me, or just want to ratchet up your stress levels, check out this map from the Richmond Memorial Health Foundation’s Market Value Analysis showing housing affordable to those making 50% of the area’s median income. That’s not a lot of places for folks to buy a home! Remember Richmond’s affordable housing summit this past October? What ever happened with that?

Here’s an incredibly neat study about urban heat islands in Richmond by local climate wizard Dr. Jeremy Hoffman and the all-star youth at Groundwork RVA. Last summer, the researchers found a 16 °F variance in temperatures across the City—that’s a big deal when temperatures are already in the mid to upper 90s! Higher temperatures mean more heat-related illness, but shade trees and greenery can help mitigate the heat island effect. You can, of course, probably guess which of Richmond neighborhoods lack a significant tree canopy and experience the most heat-related emergency calls. Hat tip to reddit user john_c_x for the link!

Residents of Chesterfield have successfully convinced the County’s Economic Development Authority to withdraw their application to rezone the MEGASITE, says Jim McConnell in the Chesterfield Observer. For a bit of context and a glimpse at the County’s priorities (which you can always see by what jurisdictions do and do not spend money on), the EDA has already spent about three times the cost of running a bus to John Tyler on just the prepwork for this megasite deal. FYI, almost none of the region’s two-year colleges are accessible to anyone without a car or not living basically next door to one.

This Saturday you have a chance to safely recycle your electronics, get rid of your poisonous products, and shred your paper. From 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM at 6807 Midlothian Turnpike (that’s the old K-mart parking lot), the City of Richmond will host an E-Cycle Day—free to city residents, but there are some fees for certain items. You can find the full list of items they’ll take over on the City’s website. Oh! They’ll also take your old, small recycle bins for use in schools!

It’s Friday Cheers season, and RVA Hub has a preview of tonight’s show featuring Valerie June and Devon Gilfillian. Tickets are ten bones, and you can pick them up online.


  • Squirrels open their series at Reading tonight at 7:15 PM.
  • Kickers head out to take on Bethlehem Steel FC on Sunday at 5:00 PM. You can watch that on CBS 6.3.
  • Nats swept this Pirates with a 3-1 win yesterday, and open a new series against the Phillies tonight at 7:05 PM.
  • Caps lost to the Penguins, 1-3, which evens the series 2-2. Game 5 begins at 7:00 PM on Saturday. Dominate the state!

This morning's longread

Simulating the universe using Einstein’s theory of gravity may solve cosmic puzzles

This one’s for all of my cosmology nerds out there! Dark matter, dark energy—what’s the deal??

If the universe were a soup, it would be more of a chunky minestrone than a silky-smooth tomato bisque. Sprinkled with matter that clumps together due to the insatiable pull of gravity, the universe is a network of dense galaxy clusters and filaments — the hearty beans and vegetables of the cosmic stew.

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Good morning, RVA: Budget season finale, Monument conversations, and downtown development

Good morning, RVA: Goodbye, friend; true crime podcast; cheerleaders