Author Topic: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl  (Read 6340 times)


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Re: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl
« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2012, 12:34:01 PM »
Actually developments such as Nocatee, WGV, Rivertown and Julington Creek Plantation are probably less damaging then the typical housing tract. The difference is found in the 'live - work - play' designs of these large scale developments. Also unlike typical tract housing, these developments include miles of natural areas, and storm water recharge lakes. toxic chemicals from roadways and lawns tend to be washed directly into local creeks and rivers in typical tract housing or developments.

Do I think they are ideal? No, and I probably wouldn't have believed the number of my neighbors at WGV who actually REALLY DO live - work - play here.

Pretty much the standard response from developers..."We're also including X acres of natural areas within the development".  Bottom line is, while that is a nice touch, the fact is they're decimating many other acres of "natural areas" that don't need to be developed.  We have so much in urban areas that could be redeveloped that there is no need for this.  And the whole "live, work, play" thing that Nocatee sells is total BS. 

toxic chemicals from roadways and lawns tend to be washed directly into local creeks and rivers in typical tract housing or developments.

Tell me again how many times Rivertown has been fined for runoff issues?
« Last Edit: December 26, 2012, 12:36:02 PM by cline »


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Re: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2013, 04:26:03 PM »
My personal experience is, apparently, much different than Mr Cox's. I have lived in the San Souci area since 1983. At the time that I purchased my house the price of a gallon of gas was about $1.10 a gallon. Over the years, I have regretted my decision to purchase this house, not because of neighbors or inconvenience, but because there are few amenities. There is nothing within walking distance of my home other than houses. I'm about 6 1/2 miles from downtown and approximately 3 miles to the nearest grocery store or restaurant. It is a totally auto-centric area with mile after mile of residential streets, many without sidewalks. As Mr Cox states, my main reason for purchasing this location was not transportation costs, it was real estate costs, but I miss the walkability afforded in areas like Riverside or San Marco. I grew up in a small midwestern town where just about everything was within walking distance. I could walk to the movies and all the shops on Main St. I feel sorry for the neighborhood kids who can't have that kind of experience. Understandably, the real estate in more walkable areas is at a higher premium, but the quality of life that it affords is the payoff.

I have witnessed, first hand, the actuality of urban sprawl in Jacksonville. As the Better Jacksonville Plan funded new roads like Hodges Blvd, retail and services followed out to the shiny new strip malls and left areas west of Southside Blvd to struggle, leaving virtual wastelands along University Blvd, Beach Blvd between St Nicholas and Southside and to a lesser extent Atlantic Blvd. Most retail and service providers are now further away than they were when I moved to the area.

I don't know if Smart Growth initiatives are the solution, but we should not continue to destroy our natural areas and leave the crumbling infrastructure that characterizes wide swaths of Duval County. We need solutions that would allow our older areas to be revitalized with walkability and non-automotive transportation in mind.

I worked downtown for close to 30 years. For about 10 years I rode an express bus. I would have continued to ride the bus, but that route was cancelled. At the time, I attempted to find a new bus route, but I could find no route that took less than 1 1/2 hours to get within a mile of my house. Again, I only live 6 1/2 miles from downtown. At that point I began driving everyday. I could have driven to the King St parking garage and taken the Skyway to work, but it was too unreliable and my employer was unsympathetic to late employees even if they could see the Skyway vehicles stuck on the track. I hope it has become more reliable since I retired 3 years ago.

Mr Cox makes some valid points, but he does not take into account many of the factors that would make our city more livable and give all of our citizens a better quality of life.


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Re: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2013, 07:13:36 PM »
Jacksonville in 1876.  A well planned grid made up the layout of the streets connected to the mass transit system of the day – docks and ships.   I would say even today's "Smart Growth" aint that smart.

« Last Edit: April 01, 2013, 03:27:19 PM by Shine »


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Re: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2013, 10:42:10 PM »
Myth #6: Rail Transit Reduces Traffic Congestion.

There is no evidence--none--that new rail transit has materially reduced traffic congestion in any urban area. Building rail is justified principally by an irresistible urge to spend taxpayers’ money. The higher the cost, railvangelists claim, the greater the benefit. Of course, the historic rail systems serving the pre-automobile cores of New York, Chicago, Paris, London, Tokyo, or Hong Kong are essential. But Sioux City, Iowa is not Hong Kong. Neither, for that matter, is Portland.

You could add BUS RAPID TRANSIT, EXPRESS BUS, COMMUTER TRAINS, STREETCARS, LIGHT RAIL, CITY BUSES, ROPE CABLEWAYS or POGO STICKS to that first sentence. Truth be told telling people that transit will solve traffic issues is a very bad idea, but does it have NO EFFECT-NONE-as Wendall Cox purports? Try this simple exercise and even Wendall will have to admit to the foolishness of his statement. Go to the Skyway, JTA express bus or downtown trolley, at 5:15 pm and count the heads, next time you in your car at a stop light, add that number to the number of cars in front of you and you'll experience an epiphany. 


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Re: Wendell Cox's 13 Myths of Urban Sprawl
« Reply #19 on: May 01, 2013, 12:39:55 AM »
There is really no sense in building for the automobile, when people no longer have a desire to drive cars. Despite Cox's opinions, more people are clamoring for livable cities, and eventually (now?) Cox will be viewed as a dinosaur. This article is a few months old, but cites studies that show younger generations don't really care about driving: