Saturday, November 22, 2008

Speculation on the next slum

Some interesting thoughts on what the future of suburbs will be:
... the story of vacant suburban homes and declining suburban neighborhoods did not begin with the [subprime] crisis, and will not end with it. ... For 60 years, Americans have pushed steadily into the suburbs, transforming the landscape and (until recently) leaving cities behind. But today the pendulum is swinging back toward urban living, and there are many reasons to believe this swing will continue. As it does, many low-density suburbs and McMansion subdivisions, including some that are lovely and affluent today, may become what inner cities became in the 1960s and ’70s—slums characterized by poverty, crime, and decay. ...
The experience of cities during the 1950s through the ’80s suggests that the fate of many single-family homes on the metropolitan fringes will be resale, at rock-bottom prices, to lower-income families—and in all likelihood, eventual conversion to apartments.

Reminded me a little of Paris, where the "suburbs" (banlieue) are the "slums"

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