Urban Fold

New Daleville, Witold Rybczynski's Subject, is Failing

Witold Rybczynski wrote The Last Harvest about a new development being created in an exurban cornfield. NPR visits the half-finished community with Witold, which is suffering from the economic crisis.

"In the parts of New Daleville that are finished, there are signs that the residents are adapting to a more modest vision.

Original house plans in the development called for elegant brick facades, in what is called the neo-traditional style - think porches and sidewalks. Instead, almost every home buyer chooses vinyl siding, because it's cheaper.

Recent retirees Diane and Paul Roberts relish the sense of country life they get in New Daleville. They sometimes see ducks flying overhead. Still, exurban life isn't convenient. There is no nearby store, and the space New Daleville's developers planned for a coffee shop or ice cream parlor is still a vacant lot.

"When you have to go four miles to get a carton of milk, that's rural!" Diane Roberts said."

Full Story: The Exurbs: Houses, Cornfields — And Empty Lots

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