Slowdown Offers Chance to Rethink Growth

The economic slowdown has caused a slowdown in growth, even in the Salt Lake City area -- recently one of the nation's fastest growing regions. This editorial calls on officials to use the slowdown as a chance to reconsider the area's growth pattern.

"In 2007, sales of existing homes fell 24 percent in Salt Lake County, 25 percent in Utah County, 18 percent in Davis and 14 percent in Weber compared to 2006."

"And last month, a scant 261 building permits for new homes were secured along the Wasatch Front, down from 928 in February 2007. It was the lowest issue since at least 1990, the year records were first kept."

"But there's a bright side to what is sure to be a temporary respite from our rapid growth, characterized by sprawling subdivisions and cookie-cutter developments. Developers and municipal officials will have a chance to catch their breath, and re-evaluate the way they're shaping our communities, and our future."

"Air pollution. Traffic congestion. New neighborhoods that eat up the last of our open spaces with monster homes and monster lawns, and spawn mind-numbing architectural, economic and demographic conformity."

Full Story: Growing smarter: Residents provide recipe for smart growth

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