Monday, April 20, 2009

Creating "Livable" Cities Requires An Open Mind

A recent article in the Washington Post by Roger K. Lewis highlights the challenges associated with changing anti-urban development mentalities in areas that wish to remain suburban – even when the area’s zip code is associated with a major city. Specifically, Lewis sheds light on some of the District’s residents in the Tenleytown area who are “cling[ing] to a suburban mentality” by opting for low-density commercial development instead of transit-oriented development – an approach from which the area and surrounding neighborhoods could benefit.

While the article discusses the politics behind the debate in this particular neighborhood, regarding livable communities in general, Lewis contends:

“Much suburban fabric is relatively static. Much urban fabric is relatively dynamic, changing as circumstances change. Living in cities means accepting and even embracing change. Living in America's capital city should be no exception.”

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