But now this bastion of "slow growth" is learning that it comes with some steep economic, social and even environmental costs:
• Soaring housing prices. With the supply so limited, prices last year rose faster than in any other region in the state. The median price of a single-family house is now $1.1 million, out of reach for all but the well-to-do.
• Traffic congestion, energy consumption and air pollution. An estimated 30,000 commuters, forced by housing prices to live far from where they work, clog U.S. Highway 101 and choke side streets during peak drive times.
• An exodus of big employers. Half a dozen Fortune 500 companies have left for less costly locales. Almost every business and government agency that remains struggles with recruiting and retaining workers who cannot afford to live nearby.
• Altered communities. Poor families have been forced to double- and triple-up in rental housing. Unable to buy homes, many middle-class families with children have moved away. UC Santa Barbara economist Bill Watkins warns that parts of the south coast are at risk of becoming a "geriatric ghetto."
• Spillover growth. Seventy-five miles away, in northern Santa Barbara County, houses are engulfing farmland. Sprawling Santa Maria is soon expected to pass Santa Barbara as the county's most populous city. But prices are on the rise there, too, largely because of demand from Santa Barbara-area workers.
DesertJets From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7897 posts, RR: 14
Reply 1, posted (10 years 2 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 2642 times:
The 'slow growth' policies put in place in many parts of the US are already beginning to backfire. The sprawl has simply moved over to the next major city, county, state, etc.... All the while more and more people are priced out of housing markets and commute times grow.
Ultimately slow growth initatives are a rather poor means of urban planning. They fail to deal with infrastructure development and reasonable land use. Instead just pushing the problem out someplace over there beyond their control.
what is really needed is broader regional development and planning. Which simply does not exist in this country. Too many political rivaliries between neighboring towns, counties, townships, etc. Nobody, or no politician or citizen group, is willing to do something that may be viewed as detrimental to town A, but will benefit the greater area overall.
Though it is not difficult to understand why these slow growth initatives are in place. If you saw the value of your home increase 35% pver a year, you'd be hard pressed to support anything that might reduce the value of the investment. But IMHO it is poor policy and will ultimately lead to more serious long term issues.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
Tbar220 From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7013 posts, RR: 23
Reply 4, posted (10 years 2 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2600 times:
Too often cities are building out instead of up. I feel it should be more important to centralize than to spread out. Growing up in Los Angeles, I understand that suburban sprawl can be a real problem. Pollution, traffic, congestion, high pricing, etc. Problem is, the land is beautiful down there and people just want to live everywhere. You can't force them not to, but perhaps give people some incentive?
AndesSMF From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (10 years 2 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2592 times:
Shall we all express collective shock? Not!
Listen, I have dealt with enough residential development lately to know a little bit about how it works. The hidden taxes and fees that exist per home can easily exceed $100,000 in California, that on top of all the other taxes built in to work related activities.
Sprawl, I sincerely dont know. From looking at the air to ground pictures here on a.net, I've seen places that are not nearly packed as we are here in California, so I dont know the dynamics for the extreme home prices here.
Did check prices in Houston today, WTF! Man, I can buy two houses there if I sell mine!