FEEDBACK

Smart Growth

May 28, 2004 • Volume 14, Issue 20
Can managed growth reduce urban sprawl?
By Mary H. Cooper

Introduction

Critics say urban sprawl increases traffic and air pollution while devouring open space, but developers say it reflects the popularity of home ownership.  (Corbis Images)
Critics say urban sprawl increases traffic and air pollution while devouring open space, but developers say it reflects the popularity of home ownership. (Corbis Images)

Sprawling suburbs, increasing traffic congestion, strip malls surrounded by acres of parking lots: Are these longstanding features of the modern American landscape only going to get worse? Without a shift in priorities, projected increases in population over the next few decades are expected to accelerate the spread of development away from city and town centers. Critics contend that sprawl eats up valuable open space, worsens air and water pollution and destroys Americans' sense of community. They champion policies that encourage “smart growth” — compact neighborhoods that combine housing, offices, schools and other amenities linked by public transportation and sidewalks. Developers and land-rights advocates call such policies intrusive social engineering and say sprawl is upstoppable — a sign of American prosperity and an efficient market responding to the growing demand for a piece of the American dream.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Urban Planning
Jul. 27, 2012  Smart Cities
Apr. 09, 2010  Earthquake Threat
Apr. 2009  Rapid Urbanization
Jun. 23, 2006  Downtown RenaissanceUpdated
May 28, 2004  Smart Growth
Oct. 03, 1997  Urban Sprawl in the West
Mar. 21, 1997  Civic Renewal
Oct. 13, 1995  Revitalizing the Cities
Jun. 09, 1989  Not in My Back Yard!
Apr. 28, 1989  Do Enterprise Zones Work?
Nov. 22, 1985  Supercities: Problems of Urban Growth
Jul. 23, 1982  Reagan and the Cities
Nov. 18, 1977  Saving America's Cities
Oct. 31, 1975  Neighborhood Control
Nov. 21, 1973  Future of the City
Feb. 07, 1973  Restrictions on Urban Growth
May 20, 1970  Urbanization of the Earth
Nov. 06, 1968  New Towns
Oct. 04, 1967  Private Enterprise in City Rebuilding
Feb. 10, 1965  Megalopolis: Promise and Problems
Mar. 04, 1964  City Beautiful
Aug. 21, 1963  Urban Renewal Under Fire
Jan. 21, 1959  Metropolitan Areas and the Federal Government
Jul. 30, 1958  Persistence of Slums
Dec. 09, 1953  Outspreading Cities
Nov. 22, 1952  Slum Clearance: 1932–1952
Jan. 14, 1937  Zoning of Urban and Rural Areas
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Land Resources and Property Rights
Regional Planning and Urbanization
FEEDBACK

Your Email Address

Subject

Provide Feedback

Suggest a topic here.

Type the characters you see below into the box

Take our survey to help us improve CQ Researcher!