Comment 66878

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted July 25, 2011 at 12:18:27 in reply to Comment 66875

At the risk of being glib, I would argue that the problem is a long sequence of civic leaders (in both government and business) who don't understand how cities work and stubbornly refuse to learn.

Every city in North America made the same mistakes that Hamilton made in the 1950s, 1960, and 1970s: converting streets to one-way; implementing mandatory parking requirements; imposing suburban single-use zoning rules on urban developments; selling transit systems to bus companies that proceeded to rip up the streetcar tracks; demolishing functioning downtown neighbourhoods to make room for inhospitable mega-structures; investing heavily in highways, roads and other infrastructure to allow massive suburban expansion with deeply discounted (read: subsidized) development charges; etc.

There's a very strong correlation between the speed at which a given municipality figured out that this is destructive behaviour and the vitality of that municipality today.

Cities that figured it out first are thriving; cities that figured it out later are recovering; and cities that didn't figure it out are still failing or at best floundering.

Comment edited by administrator Ryan on 2011-07-25 12:20:45

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