Sunday, February 26, 2006

According to a Feb. 23rd article, "For those who long
for the connectivity of small-town life, yet don't want to give up the
conveniences of urban living, neotraditional communities provide an
alternative. Designed to include everything within easy walking
distance -- from the corner grocery to the school, and perhaps even the
office -- they appeal to die-hard pedestrians. Advocates say the
traditional neighborhood design, or TND, concept, which has been around
since the mid-1980s, is picking up steam. But don't be blinded by the
label. Critics say not everything claiming to be a 'traditional'
neighborhood lives up to its billing...

"TND grew out of the new urbanism movement, a response to suburban
sprawl and a growing dependence on automobiles, says John O. Norquist,
president and CEO of the Congress for the New Urbanism and a former
mayor of Milwaukee. Norquist cites three factors that historically
combined to create the current American landscape of disparate
neighborhoods. One was zoning practices that segregated commercial and
retail districts from residential neighborhoods. Another was the
overbuilding of highways. Finally, the secondary mortgage market, until
recently, favored separately zoned, single-family homes. 'Together,'
says Norquist, 'they created a situation where people and their
activities are spread over the landscape in separate pods. The new
urbanism is all about undoing that.'..."