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Sprawl Politics Traps Americans In Blandburbs

Joel Hirschhorn examines the power of the "sprawl lobby", and its impact on the American landscape.
June 4, 2004, 10am PDT | Abhijeet Chavan | @legalaidtech
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"An enormous amount of data reveals that millions of Americans would like an alternative to suburban sprawl living. Across the nation some exceptional and courageous developers are building true communities based on smart growth and new urbanism principles. But if you want to live in such a place the odds are about 500 to 1 against you finding it in the region you prefer to live in. The Enron-type scandals get the headlines, but for decades there have been thousands of micro-scandals involving the corruption of government by the sprawl lobby. Add them up and you get the national catastrophe of sprawl corruption; it has made Americans pay higher taxes, suckered them into expensive and risky automobile dependency, and slyly seduced them into an unhealthy sedentary lifestyle with high medical costs. By spending whatever it takes to maintain the sprawl status quo there has been billion-dollar government spending on roads, schools, and other public infrastructure necessary for sprawl land development. Despite sprawl politics, with so many people directly feeling the pain of sprawl, as built environment, culture and products, a tipping point for smart growth becoming a market success is within sight."

Thanks to Charles Shaw

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Published on Tuesday, June 1, 2004 in Newtopia Magazine
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