Our federally-funded highway system has been called the greatest public subsidy to private real estate in history. Where’s that real estate? The suburbs.
You might think of cities as places for tall buildings, busy sidewalks, buses and trains, and coffee shops. Suburbs, on the other hand, are places for single-family homes, green lawns, and no sidewalks at all. But over the years that is changing - as more people move to suburbs, and they age, they’ve taken on some the characteristics of cities - but often lacking a transit connection.
Today, where we live, as we continue our city series, we talk with author and Montreal resident Taras Grescoe about what he calls Suburbs 4.0 - the current iteration of North American sprawl. Grescoe’s latest book, Straphanger, details his trips to over a dozen cities around the world examining public transit systems. Grescoe has never owned a car.
We hear also from Lyle Wray, head of the Capital Region Council of Governments, as well as Dr. Markus Moos, the author of the Atlas of Suburbanisms, about how urban and suburban patterns are blending.