Urban Fold

Rethinking the Houston Suburbs

Suburban areas are increasingly in the sights of planners and designers who are thinking of new ways to reform the sprawled out land use patterns. This interview looks at how those efforts relate to Houston.

Sustainable development experts Galina Tachieva and Tom Low talk about the problems faced in the suburbs of Houston and the rest of the U.S.

"Galina: In Houston there are many examples of places which are entirely auto-oriented. We call them sprawl patterns. And they're actually typical, not only for Houston, they're typical and normative and standard for the rest of the country. And so we believe that some of these places have out-lived their kind of life. And it would be much better if they are turned into mix-use and walkable places. Right now they are single use.

Wendy: Why is that better?

Galina: Because these places - single family residential developments, or the typical malls, shopping centers, office parks - they are single-use, very auto-oriented, separated pods of development. And they need to be rebalanced with different uses so people can walk to destinations."

Full Story: De-Sprawling Houston

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