The Cul-de-Sac Backlash
"Across the country, this staple of suburban development is drawing criticism from a growing number of planners and government officials, who say it should become an endangered species."
"Homeowners found that the cul-de-sac limited traffic, creating a sense of privacy, while encouraging ties among neighbors, who could hardly avoid one another. Developers liked the cul-de-sac because it made it possible to build on land unsuited to a grid street pattern and because home buyers were willing to pay a premium to live on one."
"But now the cul-de-sac is excoriated in certain quarters, especially by New Urbanists, as a detriment to security, community and efficient transportation."
Northfield, a city of 17,000 about 45 miles south of Minneapolis, passed an ordinance several years ago to severely limit the use of cul-de-sacs. Other cities have tried to reinvent cul-de-sacs as through streets, to the protest of residents.