Linking Equitable Redevelopment To Reduced Damages From Metropolitan Sprawl
Free (open access)
D. J. Hutch
New business, real estate and public investment dollars are skewed towards the predominantly white outlying suburbs, which fuels metropolitan sprawl, development of green spaces, and loss of farms. Many U.S. centre-cities are relegated to a preponderance of abandoned and potentially contaminated properties or brownfields. This unequal outward expansion is caused, in part, by unfair zoning and real estate practices that result in decreased development choices and increased social and economic inequality. Under-utilization of existing infrastructure potentially results in hundreds of billions of dollars in inefficiencies due to added costs and under-utilized capital. Exclusionary zoning, often based on minimum lot size requirements per household or exclusions of multifamily or accessory housing units, results in non-market limits to affordable housing. Unlike Europe’s transit oriented developments, dispersed development in the U.S. increases automobile reliance and associated mobile source pollutants. Smart growth policies and brownfield redevelopment in the U.S. can help redress one-sided investment practices that have directed development and jobs away from older and poorer communities. However, market processes are distorted to under-price sprawling greenfield development, leading to sub-optimal land consumption and allocation of resources affecting the environment, community and regional economies, whilst exacerbating social-economic inequalities. More equitable urban redevelopment efforts can strengthen existing communities while promoting improved regional environmental performance along with fiscal and economic benefits. Keywords: sustainable development, urban redevelopment, smart growth, brownfields, environmental justice, urban planning, growth management, fiscal impact, land use, equity.
sustainable development, urban redevelopment, smart growth, brownfields, environmental justice, urban planning, growth management, fiscal impact, land use, equity.