Archived

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

monsoon

Suburban Nation

Recommended Posts


considering the links in your signature, i think it's rather funny that you found litterally the ONLY anti-business comments the reviewer made, and highlight them in your post. ;)

at least from the way I interpreted the reviewer (and the book), most of suburban nation's complaints are leveled squarly at the folly of misguided government intervention. in fact, suburban nation makes the clear case that anti-sprawl progress can be made with a highly free-market point of view. i think it's no coincidence that most new urbanists talk almost exclusively about eliminating pro-sprawl governemnt restrictions - so they are free to build their projects - as opposed to smart growth planners, who seem to favor adding more restrictive but "enlightened" legislation.

but anyway, i guess we both read it the way we want to read it...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm glad you liked the post/article.

I guess I should've been more clear what was me and what was the book. Campaign Finance Reform is a pet issue of mine (as probably indicated by the very next post I wrote after that one). Suburban Nation didn't really say that much about lobbying, and most of what it said about government was complaining about how it meddled in development with strict zoning. So I'd say Captain Obvious's interpretation is pretty much on the money.

I'm not really anti-business. I'm just against businesses lobbying government, as that tends to distort the free market, resulting in things like tariffs and subsidies and other types of preferential treatment. And it seemed to me that sprawl was yet another one of those effects.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My friend recommended this book to me after she read it this spring. Unfortunately, after driving 25 minutes to Borders, I found that they did not have the book in stock. As soon as I get the cash, I plan on buying it...It sounds like a very interesting book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's an amazing book. It's full of facts that will astonish you. I read a few chapters of it for my Understanding Architecture and Urban Planning class. However, we were only provided the few chapters, not the full book. I've been dying to read the complete copy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I took it to mean that a great deal of the bad zoning and planning we have today are due to the influence of large, non-local developers (Centex, Crossland, Pulte, many others) who want to make as much money as possible on a project, pocket the money, then leave the mess behind for the local people to deal with.

I wasn't familiar with those specifics. I was mostly referring to the examples I cited in the review, but these don't surprise me either.

Being a libertarian type, my approach would not be to strengthen the government, but to try and prevent corporations from influencing government, making the market a level playing field again. I know most libertarians fear government more than corporations. I fear both, since both have a good deal of power to restrict liberties.

Anyway, thanks for the welcome!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably the biggest issue is the creation of neighborhoods where everything is withing a 5 minute walk of where you live.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Whats wrong with that? :blink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My friend recommended this book to me after she read it this spring.  Unfortunately, after driving 25 minutes to Borders, I found that they did not have the book in stock.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I find it funny that you had to drive 25 minutes to a bookstore to find a book about suburban sprawl.... :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find it funny that you had to drive 25 minutes to a bookstore to find a book about suburban sprawl.... :rolleyes:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

LOL, I never thought of it that way before, but you're so right. Fortunately, now I can check out the book from the Southfield Public Library, which is only 1/2 mile away - within walking distance.

Actually I was just there tonight, but because the university library didn't have the books I needed. I should've started my paper a month ago, but instead I am doing it now. LOL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Suburban sprawl continues to gobble up land, alarming environmentalists, one of the reason for this is probably because of the myraids of problems with urban city life and so ppl move to the outskirts for a peaceful, tranquil life. This book interest me!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That looks like a great book, I should read it when I get the chance. Where I live, Im surrounded by either just constructed or under construction homes. They're everywhere. You drive down a highway and your sorrounded by huge cookie cuter homes that will probably all be falling down in 50 years. 10 years ago it was all farmland. The cookie cutter commerce (Developments devoted to chain restaurants and stores) have followed and the city (Philly) is dieing, as are all the old main streets in places like my little town that's been around since the Revolutionary War.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really enjoyed the book. Renting it out from the local public library three years ago introduced me to this lofty "new urbanism", which I became very interested in about a year later.

There are still some questions that need to be addressed, however, based on the book's examples. Shouldn't the suburban variety of new urbanist creations function more like towns than developments? For example, Celebration, FL reminds me more of an overgrown (but good-looking) suburban development project with commercial space rather than a true town.

I guess some parts of creating new towns are unaddressed because of their difficulty - e.g. incorporation and operating the town as a city rather than a neighborhood, by allowing external developers to build and not having a strict HOA with deed restrictions control life.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.