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Suburbs and the economy

The economy has brought growth to a standstill in Phoenix, Las Vegas and other once-booming Western cities. In the next decade, what will happen to all the new suburban neighborhoods that popped up on these cities' fringes?
1. They'll be abandoned, and the rats, mosquitos and desert will reclaim them. 6 (18.18%)
2. The lower home prices will attract people anew, and growth will return back to "normal" in a few years. 6 (18.18%)
3. McMansions will be divided up into multi-family rentals, big box stores will become squatter shelters, and the exurbs will become the new slums. 11 (33.33%)
4. As prices drop in the exurbs, bohemians will flock to them and reinvent them as walkable, urban centers of art and culture. 2 (6.06%)
5. None of the above... but I've got something to say about the topic (leave a comment below). 8 (24.24%)

Total Votes: 33

Phoenix economic slowdown
Patricia Cullen
Patricia Cullen
Apr 28, 2009 03:08 PM
My sense is that its just a slow down for Phoenix
like the rest of the country, including Longmont, Colorado
where I live. Stop making it into
some damned emergency. Has anyone asked ones' parents or grandparents about the Great Depression?

There are jobs out there boys and girls. Stop whining and find
a job. A career change for developers is in order. Find something useful to do, retrain and contribute to society.

As far as Phoenix, its already an overgrown mess. Its great news that
the building has stopped. I am pleased to hear that. Its a desert and Phoenix takes too much water from the Colorado River, already. Phoenix and Las Vegas should have growth control in my opinion, to conserve water.
forecast
Beth Patterson
Beth Patterson
Apr 28, 2009 03:19 PM
I think it may be a combination of several options above. Smaller growth, at least for the short term, will return to the burbs. But it will never be the way it was, pray all the gods and goddesses. I think that 10 years or so down the line, another perfect storm will arise, and this time, the rats, coyotes and cockroaches will take the burbs by storm.
Hohokam
Allan Brockway
Allan Brockway
Apr 28, 2009 03:29 PM
Remember the Hohokam! Even with all their canals they couldn't sustain themselves in the 13th-14th centuries. Why do we think we could defy the laws of nature any better?
Ghosts
Mark Brunson
Mark Brunson
Apr 28, 2009 05:01 PM
The West has always had ephemeral towns. We romanticize the early ones as "ghost towns," but there are more recent ones as well: abandoned military bases, internment camps, workers' quarters for dams and other major building projects. Some have been dismantled, some converted to other institutional uses (imagine a youth correctional facility built on a cul de sac of of starter castles), some reborn as non-traditional communities. I think all that will happen. But one thing I'd really like to see is a long-term research project to assess what happens to materials, chemicals, etc., if they truly are abandoned -- an empirical test of the assumptions in Alan Weisman's "The World Without Us."
gone are the suburbs
Napi
Napi
Apr 28, 2009 08:48 PM
Remember the Hohokam it may not be ten years out but 20 will probably be the end of it all as there will not be enough water to go around.
none of the above
Sunny Cross
Sunny Cross
Apr 29, 2009 08:38 AM
It probably depends on where you are. Phoenix and Vegas are not alone in the sprawl, it's everywhere. Some of these places will dry up and blow away for good. Some may actually become new green/art communities. One thing for sure, life will never be like it was. Our natural resources are not sustainable at he rate we have been using them up. Water will come at a higher price and the population will increase with people out of work, nothing to do but hang out. Baby boom? Crops need water. Let's hope humanity moves back into the cities, gets to know their neighbors and puts in solar and gardens on their balconies.
Future "exurban" development in Nevada
RussBBinVegas@aol.com
RussBBinVegas@aol.com
Apr 29, 2009 10:46 AM
Actually, Las Vegas is already such a hideous cancerous sprawling blob that one can only hope any future development "stays here". What has pained me is watching my beautiful voluptuous wonderful wild state of rural Nevada get attacked like a defenseless virgin, with gargantuan groundwater-thieving proposals (that thank Vishnu for the time being have been delayed) and the so-called Coyote Springs: A big-shot developer with all of Nevada's politicians in his (extra-wide hips) pocket was able to grease through a completely atrocious carbunkle on the land, "luxury golf-course homes" in a pristine valley 80 miles north of Vegas. I'm not a religious person but if I were I'd be asking the Devil to smite Coyote Springs with scorpions & rattlesnakes & bad economies so it never gets built much past the "Welcome to god-awful Hades" sales-office stage.
It is never just one thing.
Wes Rolley
Wes Rolley
Apr 30, 2009 08:11 AM
We all tend to look at problems in their simplest, most solvable form. This world is much to complex for that and we had better start thinking in ecological terms. Whether the exurbs return, or Phoenix expands laterally again depend on more than the economy. Maybe it depends on water, on climate (which determines water), on population growth, on the price of energy and the cost of transportation.

I have my own vision of a sustainable, ecologically planned community but it will take us a lot of time and a lot of changing to get there.
urban effect
yew
yew
May 05, 2009 06:43 PM
But thought's the slave of life, and life time's fool;
And time, that takes survey of all the world, 3045
Must have a stop.

please read as "takes survey of all the Cosmos"
 the process of the cosmogenesis is the only urbanization that has come about.

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