Urbification: Taking the sub out of Calif. suburbs

Walking. Bicycling. Alternatives to Driving Everywhere. Social justice. Alternatives to suburban boredom and waste. And the infrastructure and technology needed to get there.

Monday, July 07, 2003

Andy Kunz, from the New Urbanism list, 7/5/03: "[What] we DON'T need is transit that is 'flexible to adapt to changing destinations of a dynamic, decentralized metropolis' (i.e. sprawl). Sprawl is characterized by constantly changing focus areas, new developments putting older ones out of business, shifting centers, continued growth to the perimeter while the centers die, etc. This is throw-away city building (sprawl). A fixed rail system gives focus to an area where real investment can take place and where that investment lasts for many years and keeps getting better with time. Fixed rail investments are one of the strongest community builders possible and is exactly what we do want to be promoting. Fixed rail systems help stablize an area and signal to real estate developers serious investment and a serious commitment to a fixed area, which in turn attracts serious long term investment, rather than the typical throw-away junk of sprawl. Fixed rail systems attract density to help make the rail systems maintain high ridership, helping to reshape an area from sprawl to compact, walkable, dense places. (Witness the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor in Arlington growth and development over the past 20 years.) The only thing that 'should be viewed skeptically' is anything that comes from the so called think tanks and institutes who get their financing from the highway lobby."

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