Articles in the Sprawl Category
Ok. In case you missed it, the city of Cleveland lost 17 percent of its population in the last decade. Nearly one in five residents packed up and left in just ten years. That’s almost 2 percent a year, or one in 50 people, that decided to leave Cleveland annually.
Where did they go? The overwhelming answer is the suburbs. The Cleveland metro region lost a relatively minor 2.5 percent of its population over the same time period, so we can be assured manufacturing losses aren’t impacting all our communities equally.
Exurban Medina County, over that time period, grew 14 percent. Exurban Avon grew 85 percent.
Featured, Sprawl, U.S. Auto Industry »
I’ll admit it: I love the Chrysler ad campaign “Imported from Detroit,” which debuted in February’s Super Bowl spot starring Eminem.
What can I say? I’m a sucker for hometown pride. I was born about 60 miles downriver from the Motor City in Toledo, Ohio, a town sometimes known affectionately as “Little Detroit.” I remember when it was considered treasonous to drive a foreign car.
That’s the brilliance of these ads. They appeal to our inner urge to root for the underdog, our nostalgia for simpler days. Those flashes of a grand-looking Woodward Avenue. The water tower that proudly shouts “Birmingham, Michigan.”
This post originally appeared on Streetsblog.
Youngstown, Ohio has its share of problems.
Once a single-industry steel town, the rust belt poster child has seen its population dwindle from 115,000 residents to barely 67,000 over just three decades. For the better part of the last century, the city was known for its mafia activity, and shaking off the residue of government corruption and violence has been difficult. Its homicide rate — driven upward by a not-yet-recovered economy — puts the city in league with towns three times its size.
But undergirding all of …
Public Transportation, Sprawl »
Akron is a smart city. I just want to get that out of the way.
I was just browsing Green City Blue Lake Today and I stumbled across this: Akron Maps Out Sustainable Land Use and Transportation. Writes GCBL’s Mark Lefkowitz:
Connecting Communities: A Guide to Integrating Land Use and Transportation is a good read on the Akron/Summit region’s development patterns with an eye toward “increasing transportation choices, improving connectivity and reducing environmental impact.”
The article continues that Akron will be inventorying parking, sidewalks, transit stops, bikeways and landuse to explore …
Regionalism, Sprawl, Urban Planning »
Very interesting story in Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal about the difficulties of consolidating local governments and local government services.
It focuses on Michigan and Governor Rick Snyder’s push to consolidate some of its many units of government (1,773 municipalities, 609 school districts, 1,071 fire departments and 608 police departments, according to the story).
Though mergers might make fiscal sense, they aren’t always popular, as the story explains:
This article originally appeared on Streetsblog.
Columbus, Ohio, is a retail Mecca. The town is home to the corporate headquarters of Limited Brands, Abercrombie & Fitch, Bath & Body Works and Victoria’s Secret. So it’s no surprise that malls figure prominently in the local economy. For decades they have guided development further and further from the core of the city.
Decades ago Columbus was served by a downtown mall — City Center — and malls in its west, north and east neighborhoods: Northland, Westland and Eastland. But in the ’90s, developers …
Featured, Sprawl, Urban Poverty »
Ohio’s cities are dying. That is the simple truth. In fact there is practically no other state in the union whose major cities have experienced the same amount of population loss. This hard truth was driven home when the results of the 2010 Census came out. The six biggest cities in Ohio, save Columbus, all experienced population loss. Cleveland, which has lost over half of its population, saw a 17 percent decline. Dayton lost nearly 15 percent. Youngstown, once home to 170,000 people, is now smaller than the city of Parma. Cincinnati, Akron, and Toledo also registered losses.
One of the main drivers behind this, well known to many of you, is sprawl or decentralization. This is a problem with a very long history. At the end of the first decade of the twentieth century, Ohio already had over 784 different municipalities, with 31 just in Hamilton County. This plethora of municipalities grew with little or no guidance from long term and sustainable planning.
Across the nation, there’s a lot of hand wringing going on about how state budget crises will affect local communities. Will trash pickup be less frequent? Will senior services be cut? How will the schools be affected?
All of this obscures, to a certain extent, one of the major ways we got ourselves into this mess in the first place. For roughly 50 years, states have allowed and encouraged their metro areas to grow outward, building countless miles of new roads, sewers, and other infrastructure with little regard for the sustainability and efficiency of the new communities.
This trend is particularly disastrous in places that have had stagnant or declining populations, as Aaron Renn from the Urbanophile explains:
Featured, Race Relations, Sprawl »
Among the myriad insights from the new Census is another blow to Milwaukee. The metro region was once again rated the most segregated in the country, beating out notoriously divided metros like Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago and LA.
We’ve written before about how metro Milwaukee’s development policies encourage sprawl, isolating people of color and the poor in the city (while degrading the environment in the suburbs). In its analysis, Salon takes another tack. Anti-transit policies, like the ones endorsed by former Milwaukee County executive and current governor Scott Walker, serve to further isolate the region’s disenfranchised populations. Salon elaborates on the local atmosphere:
Andrew Basile, writer of the infamous Detroit sprawl letter, shared this video he has been working on with us. It outlines how car culture destroyed Detroit and how the Woodward Corridor presents an opportunity for revitalization.
What an inspiring guy. Kudos to Mr. Basile for fighting the good fight and not “silently surrendering,” like so many other businesses.
Detroit’s Woodward Avenue: