Smart Growth
Journal of Property Management (12/00) Vol. 65, No. 6 p.21; Manewith, Esther L.

Smart growth policies are molding cityscapes across North America. Such initiative are beginning to remedy the detrimental impact that suburban sprawl has had on the vitality of downtown areas, on available land resources, and on our over-congested roadways. Smart growth is a general title given to many different forms of reinvigoration in development in our cities. It includes zoning changes in urban centers to allow for a more tightly packed density of population, and nurturing the development of relatively self-sufficient and contained neighborhoods around commercial and industrial sections. Shopping and entertainment are within close proximity to residences. Aged structures are supplanted by modern, affordable, and safe housing, or even subjected to renovation to maintain the integrity and historicity of the original structure's character and beauty. In a nutshell, these initiatives are transforming once unsafe and rundown areas of towns into highly demanded residential communities and commercial districts. Smart communities also include high-tech touches, like apartment complexes fully wired and capable of handling telephone, cable, and DSL modes of information transfer all at once. Another aspect of smart growth is increased power-center construction, in which a multitude of super chain stores like WalMart and Sam's Club and specialty music, shoe, and bookstores join together in one location on a major artery or intersection. Modern retirement communities are another aspect of smart-growth planning. Elderly individuals would reside in individual units in which they can remain in relative independence, but remain part of a community that offers social outlets and easy access to shopping and public transportation.


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