Top Ten Enlightened Suburbs

Peter Katz and Jay Walljasper pick ten notable suburbs that are breaking the mold and creating new, vibrant communities.

"1. Montgomery County, Maryland (Washington, D.C.)
A mostly affluent stretch of communities northwest of D.C., it?s home to probably the leftiest(?) burb anywhere (Takoma Park) and one of the very first New Urbanist communities (Kentlands). Montgomery County stands out as a national leader in preventing sprawl by preserving thousands of acres of farmland. It has also achieved impressive results on affordable housing by requiring developers to include 15 percent lower-income units in all major projects or subdivisions.

2. Tempe, Arizona (Phoenix)
Standard-issue Sun belt sprawl has been transformed into a genuinely lively town through smart redevelopment and historical restoration. Local planners capitalized on the presence of Arizona State University to create a lively main street that attracts shoppers, cultural patrons, and lovers of urban atmosphere from around the area.

3. Suisun City, California (Bay Area)
Once a tough town notorious for pollution, drugs, and crime, Suisun City took bold steps in revitalizing its waterfront, investing in its tatty downtown, and building a handsome city hall and two public plazas. To the surprise of numerous skeptics, it worked, and this suburb on the way to Sacramento is now enjoying a renaissance.

Full Story: Ten Most Enlightened Suburbs

Comments

building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.
$25
Red necktie with map of Boston

For dads and grads: tie one on to celebrate your city!

Choose from over 20 styles imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
$44.95
Woman wearing city map tote bag

City Shoulder Totes - New Cities Added!

Durable CityFabric© shoulder tote bags available from 9 different cities.
$22.00
Wood necklace with city map

City Necklaces

These sweet pendants are engraved on a cedar charm with a mini map of selected cities. The perfect gift for friends and family or yourself!
$28.00