Comment 2126

By tybalt (registered) | Posted November 14, 2006 at 15:52:57

The problem is not business but property speculation - making money by buying farmland cheap, getting it rezoned, building sprawl houses on it, and getting the city to provide you with essential infrastructure to service the sprawl houses you built.

Exactly, and the key to that statement is that speculation isn't business. When the city controls its development policy (i.e. the dog wags the tail) development occurs in a way (and at a pace) that benefits the city as a whole. When developers control city development policy (i.e. the tail wags the dog) the developers ensure that they benefit first.

It's not anti-business to want to eliminate the power developers have over City Hall. In fact, it's pro-business... because existing businesses in the city will benefit from development priorities that take their needs into account. Mega-project greenfield development lines the pockets of the few businesses (often ones that don't exist yet) at the expense of the many businesses in the city, each of which is hurt everytime a giant new far-flung suburb-and-big-box development is created.

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