Thursday, August 21, 2008
Will high gas prices and tight credit stifle the exurbs? Many stories so assert, of course. But this may not be the complete picture. NPR today ran a nice segment (including some quotes from Penn’s urban commentator Witold Rybczynski) about Chester County, Pa., with anecdotes about how a seemingly exurban county may continue to grow. There’s the two-income couple that commutes in different directions –- one to Philadelphia and the other to Baltimore –- for whom Chester County makes economic sense. There are businesses for which settling in Chester County is a good “regional” choice. And there’s a plan for a putatively new-urbanist-tinged “town center” in Malvern that is designed to draw businesses, retail, and residences, all in proximity to each other. For some, life in a planned new exurban town may –- like a 19th century small town –- make more sense than life in an old-fashioned big city.
Why might a corporate-planned town sometimes be attractive than a “real” one? Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post.
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