24-7 Live-Work-Play Is A Hoax

NewGeography.com published an article this week that empirically (i.e., with U.S. Census data) disproves the rhetoric that has been used for so long to promote increases in density and tall buildings in Scottsdale: That most people desire urban living.

From the article:

The movement to the suburbs was pervasive. In each of the age categories, there was a net migration from the principal cities to the suburbs. There was also net migration to the “suburbs” in all categories of educational attainment.

These data are in contrast to claims that people are moving from a suburbs to central cities. Virtually none of the migration data has shown any such movement. Moreover, the city population estimates produced for 2011 by the Census Bureau, which indicated stronger central city growth have been shown to be simply allocations of growth within counties, rather than genuine estimates of population increase.

What makes Scottsdale great, and what has made Scottsdale great, is our reputation as a suburban and rural community. The folks who are using buzzwords like “24-7 Lifestyle,” and “Live-Work-Play,” are merely salesmen (and zoning attorneys).

To give credit where credit is due, this article came to my attention through a forwarded email originating from a passionate fellow community advocate. Unfortunately, for unfathomable reasons this fellow worked to re-elect Scottsdale’s incumbent mayor, Jim Lane. Jim has been the consummate developers’ friend and has voted for more urbanization of Scottsdale than any mayor in our history.

So, while I’d like to give my fellow advocate credit by name for his passion, I’d have to give him equal and offsetting criticism for shooting himself (and the rest of us) in the foot.

Suffice it to say, “You know who you are.”

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