John Mcllwain with the Urban Land Institute makes some interesting points for the shift from suburban sprawl to urban infill housing. If there is a permanent shift in housing demand, which municipalities here in San Diego County are going to embrace the concept and create new policies to entice developers to build these new housing projects?

Full article: http://urbanland.uli.org/Articles/2012/April/McIlwainSprawl?utm_source=uli&utm_medium=eblast&utm_campaign=040912

Some good excerpts:

“An analysis by USA Today of recent Census data suggests that current population growth is occurring in the more central, closer-in counties of metropolitan regions while many outer edge counties have been losing population since 2006. This is a startling turnaround and the first time this has occurred since the end of World War II more than six decades ago.”

“Development is driven by market trends, and what studies are consistently showing is that the two major demographic groups, the aging baby boomers (boomers) and their kids, the echo boomers or generation Y (Gen Y), have a growing preference for more urban living.”

“Gen Y, the largest generation in U.S. history, now in their twenties and early thirties, would under other circumstances provide strong support for suburban housing development as first-time homebuyers. Due to the recession, however, their homeownership rate is falling. There are a mix of factors behind this including their bleak job prospects, the overwhelming student debt they carry, and a sensible desire on their part not to buy a home while they remain uncertain about where they will find jobs.”

“Government finances are another constraint to sprawl. Outer-ring counties are financially strapped; there are no funds for more roads or for other infrastructure development. This has been causing a shift in planning in these counties as they begin to look for more compact and sustainable development that has a smaller effect on their budgets. ”

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