The Problems with “Smart Growth”

May 23, 2010 • Daily Email Recap

Greetings from Islamabad. On the plane here, I finished reading the May-June issue of Mother Jones. The article “Tall is Beautiful” (see http://motherjones.com/toc/2010/05) outlines why environmentalists should embrace urban development. Three years ago, Jack Marshall wrote the following paper, which is posted at http://www.stopgrowthasap.org/library-articles.php#library-reading-Smart-Growth, pointing out some of the limitations of “Smart Growth.”
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Some thirty years ago the concept of “smart” growth represented cutting edge thinking among community planners. Twenty years ago it was still innovative and provocative, and by about ten years ago it had become conventional wisdom among most progressive planners.

Today “smart” growth should be considered a valuable component of a larger, more comprehensive and visionary strategy for growth management. By itself, though, “smart” growth is not enough. When done right, it offers short-term solutions to sprawl, but it simply does not guide us over the long haul toward sustainable communities.

For full article, visit:
http://www.stopgrowthasap.org


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