A Story I Never Get Tired of Reading!

Ok, I know, we’ve written about this before (see here and here) so my apologies if you are sick of hearing about it.

But frankly, I think it’s important to remember that whatever challenges our part of the country faces, it’s no bed of roses in the Sun Belt, either.  And now there’s a book to explain more on this topic.

USA Today says the “sunburnt” cities of Florida, California and the Southwest must rethink themselves.

The paper writes, “Boomtowns that have been scorched by the housing crisis could learn from struggling Rust Belt communities,” according to Justin Hollander, urban planning professor at Tufts University and author of Sunburnt Cities: The Great Recession, Depopulation and Urban Planning in the American Sunbelt, which was published March 1.

“Sunburnt cities have a chance to limit growth for growth’s sake by allowing dense development and reducing parking requirements to encourage walking, public transportation and more green space, Hollander says.

‘In each place there are a lot of opportunities to think smaller,’ he says. ‘It hasn’t happened yet. Largely, these cities are in denial.'”

We’ll see, I guess, what kinds of choices places like the ones Hollander describes make.



Filed under Economic Development, Featured, Real Estate, regionalism, sprawl, Urban Planning

4 responses to “A Story I Never Get Tired of Reading!

  1. Don’t count on anything. Americans are extremely myopic and self oriented. High energy cost is likely the only thing that will stop the stupidity.

  2. A lot of diversity in that red area. Places like Texas, Georgia and North Carolina are doing pretty well while Arizona and Nevada can now absolute disasters. What we now see is that they had no economy beyond the construction and sale of new homes.

    One huge difference one can see on the sidebar of my blog is the huge, diverse array of educational institutions in the Pittsburgh/Ohio region, many of which are top tier.

    In Arizona, you have a grand choice of The University Of Arizona and and Arizona state. In Nevada it might be worse.

    This digs at the myth that the region was left with few assets by the “robber barons”. Actually, they left lots of awesome stuff we haven’t appreciated or made good use of.

  3. tonyg

    we have placed millions of people apon a desert or a swamp. Water Resources or the lack there of is the most likely self limiting feature on a long term basis. The american southwest has a great deal of evidence of this being the case. Many prior civilizations have vanished. From west Texas west to Southern Califorina the demands for water are not sustainable.

    Florida is a special case. As we have drained the swamps for realtors to sell houses, we have lowered the water table again at un-sustainable rates.

  4. tonyg,

    Your facts there are somewhat exagerated. Agriculture in California accounts for a very high percent of water use.


    “Farming accounts for 80 percent of the state’s water usage, according to the Pacific Institute, but the farm industry and government put the number much lower at 40 percent to 60 percent.”

    They actually grow rice in dry California–insane. Not saying water won’t limit growth somewhat but other factors are likely to be a bigger factor. Well organised, thoughtful, dense cities could exist in the Southwest even large ones.

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