Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Guest donaltopablo

Atlanta tops single family housing activity

Recommended Posts

Guest donaltopablo

Some may see this as just another stupid list Atlanta found it's way to the top. But to me this clearly shows two things:

Atlanta metro is still growing at a rather amazing pace... and it's still sprawl.

Atlanta again leads U.S. in single-family housing

The greater Atlanta area, which recorded 53,750 single-family housing permits last year, led the nation in housing activity, the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association reported.

That marks the 13th consecutive year Atlanta has topped that list.

Rounding out the top five housing markets for single-family permits were the metropolitan areas of Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz. with 46,590; Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. with 35,730; Houston with 33,970; and Washington, D.C. with 30,760.

The total issuance of single-family permits across the country for 2003 was 1.444 million, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

"We are excited to be the most active housing market in the country once again. It has been a long run," said David M. Smith, president of the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association and a builder/developer in the metro Atlanta area. "Overall, housing demand has remained strong and the market has been vibrant, but we are seeing changes in buying activity."

During Atlanta's 13-year reign as the hottest housing market in the country, total annual building permits in greater Atlanta have ranged from a low of 24,684 in 1991 at the start of the reign, to a high of 66,550 in 2002.

"The market for higher end homes has fluctuated during the last two years, though it has been gaining strength in recent months. The first-time buyer and first-time move-up markets have not slowed since 1991," said Smith, who also is president of Hedgewood Development Corp. "Low interest rates continue to fuel the market and are a major factor behind the strength of our entry-level market. Coupled with the recent increase in job growth occurring throughout the Atlanta area, we are optimistic about 2004."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I find this rather interesting, as metro ATL supposedly lost jobs, but 53,000 single family homes were constructed. The scary thing is that most of those homes were built in sprawl. And then people wonder why the air quality is bad and traffic gets continually worse. Will ATL ever try to restrict sprawl or at least slow it down and concentrate on smart growth? Or will the metro just sprawl forever, while roads get widened and even more freeways are built?

In contrast to ATL, metro Detroit added 21,600 homes in the first 10 months of the year. I cannot find a final number, but I'd estimate that 23,500 homes were constructed last year. That is not even half the number metro ATL constructed! There is an interesting trend in Detroit however, in that more and more homes are being constructed in cities instead of outlying areas. Still, we have our sprawl, which gets worse by the hour.

Both cities had a record year for the amount of new homes constructed. And this was occuring despite the fact that the economy is sluggish. I think a lot of it may have to do with low interest rates.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest donaltopablo

Atlanta is quickly becoming a contrast in and of itself.

City popular is on the rise, and in city construction is booming like never before.

Yet the city is sprawling at an alarming yet.

I don't think there will ever be any controls on growth/sprawl in metro Atlanta. I think the trend we have now will continue for some time. Atlanta will continue to develop the inner core, based out of desire for an urban lifestyle and to avoid traffic clogged streets and cookie cutter neighborhoods. But until sprawl as a fad itself ends, Atlanta will likely continue down this path. We don't have anyone with the vision, or power, to do otherwise. Even those (like our previous governor) who supported transit solutions and commuter rail, were sprawl supporters. For example, he supported commuter rail, and got the idea rolling, all while planning to build another cross suburb highway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stopping sprawl is virtually impossible to do, even if you have leaders willing to try stopping it. Michigan's governor is trying to stop sprawl, or at least slow it down. She wants to implement smart growth policies and encourage urban development, but that is much easier said than done. She has done just about everything she can do to encourage development in cities, yet we are still sprawling just as much as we were before.

The smart growth movement is picking up steam. Smart growth will not solve all the problems, but at least it is a step in the right direction. The only way to really stop sprawl is to totally rewrite the zoning codes in our cities that encourage sprawl by separating separating the various live & work functions in our cities. Cities all over the country are looking over their zoning codes and reevaluating them. However, this takes time. Stopping sprawl requires the American people to change the mindset they have had for more than 50 years. It wouldn't be easy, that's for sure, but given a lot of time it could happen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.