WIT Press

Sustainability Strategies In North American Cities

Price

Free (open access)

Paper DOI

10.2495/SPD050131

Volume

84

Pages

10

Published

2005

Size

335 kb

Author(s)

L. A. Reese & G. Sands

Abstract

Urban areas throughout North America have traditionally evidenced little concern for sustainability in their land use and development patterns. Political fragmentation and a lack of clear policy guidelines from senior governments have combined with the consumer preferences of a largely affluent population to perpetuate discontinuous, low density sprawl as the predominant urban form. There have been few effective efforts to limit peripheral growth and ensure the sustainability of fringe developments. Inner city revitalization through property tax abatements and core area revitalizations efforts have similarly met with limited success. Business incubators, faith based organizations and other community based revitalization initiatives appear to hold somewhat more promise. Keywords: urban sprawl, metropolitan governance, tax abatements, faith based organizations, business incubators, central business district, tax increment financing. 1 Introduction Urban areas throughout North American have historically assigned low priority to issues of sustainability. In part, this is the result of the relative abundance of land and other natural resources. Few North American metropolitan areas are physically constrained by barriers that limit their continued outward diffusion. Even where natural resources, especially water, are limited, engineering solutions have allowed urban areas to grow. The result has been a dominant pattern of low density \“sprawl” in urban areas throughout North America. This low density, discontinuous development consumes excessive amounts of land and natural resources, impacts environmentally sensitive areas, and is difficult to

Keywords

urban sprawl, metropolitan governance, tax abatements, faith based organizations, business incubators, central business district, tax increment