It’s the marketplace – stupid

September 10th, 2013 by Ken

Well – another urban village concept bites the dust.

This is the third or fourth time in my memory that planners have tried to create an urban village from scratch and the third or fourth time they’ve failed.

This time around I’m talking about Briggs Village, but I could be talking about Summerwalk Village or any number of other planned urban villages.

An urban village is a plan whereby a new development incorporates housing, parks, schools, jobs, retail and commercial development all within the same center.

Everyone walks to school or to church or to work or to shopping.  In other words, everyone reverts to living in the 19th Century.

Briggs Village is just the latest effort on the part of planners to get us out of our cars.

For more than 20 years, Briggs Village was an idea whose time hadn’t yet come – – or better yet – – whose time had passed a century ago.  It was to be a town center of retail shops, banks, restaurants and if possible – – jobs.  It would be surrounded by homes and apartments.

But – – as usual – – the marketplace determines what gets built.   Just like in Summerwalk, the developers of Briggs Village managed to build and sell the housing but were unable to proceed with the retail and commercial part of the plan.

Now the builder wants to build more housing and reduce the amount of space devoted to mixed use.

It’s not a new story.

Across the county and across our state, planner are trying to force developers to build something no one wants.

It’s the marketplace stupid – – that’s the real answer.

Posted in The Real News

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