Preparing for the Next Housing Boom

Richard Reep explains how developers, contractors, and even home-buyers in Florida contributed to the growth for growth's sake attitude which has left the Florida landscape littered with poorly built condos and plenty of lessons to be learned.
May 27, 2011, 12pm PDT | Victor Negrete
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From post on New Geography:

"Saws, hammers, and cranes can be heard through the quiet suburban developments and subdivisions around Florida, as shingles and stucco are cut off in small patches to reveal serious problems within. Like the hidden defects in mortgage-backed securities and other arcane instruments of finance, these flaws are covered up and papered over, but are no less damaging. They are also just as revealing about our collective haste to accommodate growth."

Reep, a Florida-based architect, writes "rapid growth breeds errors, compromises, and sloppiness which have dire, lasting consequences." Among these errors and compromises, Reep cites unskilled or inexperienced construction crews, tolerance for poor quality buildings, and a focus on short-term returns rather than long-term investments.

"As the tide rolls in once again, Florida can make a pact with itself to invest in development, rather than growth. Redeveloping older, inner cores of cities where services and employment are already in place can go a longer way towards making the state a sustainable, diverse place to live than paving one more tract of raw land mowed down for home lots can."

Full Story:
Published on Sunday, May 22, 2011 in New Geography
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