Sunday, January 3, 2010

Neighbors Be Gone

Pat, move to the suburbs already. I've never seen someone, who works for Milwaukee's newspaper and lives in Milwaukee, write so much about the wonderful suburbs.

His latest defense claims suburbs are transforming themselves into quasi-urban locations through "innovative" subdivision developers. McIlheran's hero in this suburban quest is Rick Harrison, of suburban Minneapolis.

Mr. Harrison revealed his development philosophy, "People don't want to walk five minutes to a park. They want to see it outside their window. And they don't want to see their neighbors and they don't want to sit on their porch all day." Yeah! The dream of suburbia is having a park for a back yard, never seeing another human near one's home, and porch-less facades as far as the eye can see. What a wonderful community. Can't you feel the love?

But there you have it: like big, overgrown babies, the Harrisons and McIlherans of the world feel they should be able to live as they please, screw everyone else! They've had it up to here with all these rules!

The point - of conservation, environmental awareness, density, etc. - is to end sprawl and growth in the suburbs, not to just green over such misplaced development.

These Pollyannas with their heads in the sand, when will they learn? Even though you put lipstick on a pig, it's still a pig.

2 comments: said...

A big part of the problem that exists in suburbia is a lack of community. The physical closeness of the buildings in cities makes for a higher population density and a higher population density makes it so that you will know more of your neighbors.

I grew up in Milwaukee and knew my neighbors across the street and for several houses down. I knew my neighbors across the alley from me and I knew some of the neighbors on the next block because they went to school with me.

There are a few things that knit a community together besides density and one largely overlooked benefit is sidewalks. While I moved to a suburb within Milwaukee County nearly 20 years ago, I have never forgotten the benefit that sidewalks brought. I could visit a friend a few doors down, while my own son had to be driven or walked to his friends houses because there are no sidewalks in our community. said...
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