I get lots of letters from people in various corners of the nation who are hysterically disturbed by the continuing spectacle of suburban development. But instead of joining in their hand-wringing, I reply by stating my serene conviction that we are at the end of the cycle — and by that I mean the grand meta-cycle of the suburban project as a whole. It’s over. Whatever you see out there now is pretty much what we’re going to be stuck with. The remaining things under construction are the last twitchings of a dying organism.
The remainder of his screed and, from what I can tell from a quick glance, his blog go on about the unwashed masses and their desire for space, and he attributes all that growth, all misguided (by someone other than a smart fellow like him or his correspondents) public policy, and foreign policy to OIIIIIIL.
American expansion, of which suburban expansion is the latest and most myopically pooh-poohed by those who look down upon single family homes, starts before even Manifest Destiny. People who came to America came here to escape crowding or busybodies telling them how to live their lives. Most of America still doesn’t like those things. Those who do are welcome to the decaying urban cores and the artificial mixed use developments in the suburbs.
Instead of recentralization into urban cores, I expect we’ll find alternate means of transportation to and from our strip malls with their excessive retail space (more retail space = more choice for consumers, but some people don’t think average people need choices; those elites think the average person needs diktats). With the Internet and technology serving to decentralize workplaces (and even provide decentralized shopping), I think the trend toward stretching out and thinning population density will continue.
But don’t tell those elites who want to live in crime-ridden, mismanaged urban centers that. They need their pipe dreams.