Sunday, August 09, 2015

The rise of private transit, Texaplex book, Metro's redesign, what Jane Jacobs got wrong about cities, and more

Just a few small items this week:
"Just as conservatives who [hanker] for a return to the ’50s are sure to be disappointed, urban advocates who suggest a “return to the city” for middle-class families will be as well. Both minorities and millennials, often thought of as spearheading a “back to the city” drive, are, according to most indicators, moving out to the suburbs as they enter their 30s and start families. 
Dense urbanity, of course, remains a huge contributor to the nation’s economy and culture. Urban centers are great places for the talented, the young, and childless affluent adults. But for most Americans, the central city offers at best a temporary lifestyle. It does not fit with what people can afford and where they want to live. There is a reason why 70 to 80 percent of Americans in our metropolitan areas live in suburbs, and those numbers are not likely to change appreciably in the coming decade."
      Finally, Reason on the rise of private transit with better service for niche markets, which I've been calling for for a long time for Houston commuters, ideally with a subsidy by METRO.

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      At 10:07 AM, August 19, 2015, Anonymous Mike said...

      The Jane Jacobs article is sort of like saying, families don't prefer houses because more and more families are living in apartments. What they can afford is not necessarily what they prefer. What Jane Jacobs didn't predict, I think, was that inner cities would become so incredibly popular over the next four decades after her book that all but the very wealthy would be priced out. A similar thing is happening in central Austin, most of which is hardly urban, but cost of living has gotten so high that families are in steep decline. So everyone reluctantly moves further out, not because they like suburbs (80% of central Austin looks like a suburb) but because prices are so high.


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