Today’s must-read: Richard Florida on the shape of things to come
This past weekend I had the distinct pleasure of reading more than four paragraphs of something that wasn’t specifically about Alameda. (Hey, keeping you informed is a big job.) Wouldn’t you know it, though, Richard Florida’s cover story in the latest Atlantic Monthly, “How the Crash Will Reshape America,” addresses something very pertinent to us on this little Island: housing development.
Basically, he says America needs to stop far-flung, low-density suburban sprawl and replace it with development that sounds an awful lot like what’s being proposed at the Point – especially in talent-heavy places like the Bay Area that he says are poised to thrive. Per Florida:
If there is one constant in the history of capitalist development, it is the ever-more-intensive use of space. Today, we need to begin making smarter use of both our urban spaces and the suburban rings that surround them—packing in more people, more affordably, while at the same time improving their quality of life. That means liberal zoning and building codes within cities to allow more residential development, more mixed-use development in suburbs and cities alike, the in-filling of suburban cores near rail links, new investment in rail, and congestion pricing for travel on our roads. Not everyone wants to live in city centers, and the suburbs are not about to disappear. But we can do a much better job of connecting suburbs to cities and to each other, and allowing regions to grow bigger and denser without losing their velocity.
Florida, incidentally, is the author of “The Rise of the Creative Class.”