Urban Fold

Zoning Our Way to HOA Insanity

If local's so great, why is the HOA, the country's most popular form of micro-governance, such an impediment to complete, complex and convivial communities? Scott Doyon has some ideas.
radcliffe dacanay / flickr

"Perhaps the smallest, most local form of governance — one that over 60 million Americans routinely submit themselves to — is the home owners association (HOA). And generally speaking, HOAs don’t get a whole lot of good press in our collective efforts to build a better world."

"Like the whimsy of chalk drawings on the sidewalk? Your HOA doesn’t. Want to make a show of patriotism? Take it somewhere else, rabble rouser. Got a hankerin’ for fresh veggies or just like to spend some time tending the garden? No can do."

Instead, Doyon suggests that "Communities best positioned to thrive in an ever-changing world are those where governance is an exercise in balancing complexity. ... But the one way it doesn’t happen is on the pleasantly manicured streets of an HOA-regulated single-use subdivision."

Full Story: Zoning Our Way to HOA Insanity

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