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President Obama: Days of Building Sprawl Are Over

Responding to a question from a city councilwoman about transportation and infrastructure in the stimulus bill during a town hall forum in Ft. Myers, Florida, President Obama said that the days of just building sprawl are over.

From a transcript provided by Transportation for America:

Not only do we need to rebuild our roads, our bridges, our ports, our levies, our dams, but we also have to plan for the future. This is the same example of turning crisis into opportunity...Now, look, this is America. We always had the best infrastructure. We were always willing to invest in the future. Governor Crist mentioned Abraham Lincoln. In the middle of the Civil War, in the midst of all this danger and peril, what did he do? He helped move the intercontinental railroad.  He helped start land grant colleges. He understood that even when you’re in the middle of crisis, you’ve got to keep your eye on the future. So transportation is not just fixing our old transportation systems but its also imaging new transportation systems.

That’s why I’d like to see high speed rail where it can be constructed. That’s why I would like to invest in mass transit because potentially that’s energy efficient and I think people are alot more open now to thinking regionally in terms of how we plan our transportation infrastructure. The days where we’re just building sprawl forever, those days are over. I think that Republicans, Democrats, everybody recognizes that that’s not a smart way to build communities. So we should be using this money to help spur this kind of innovative thinking when it comes to transportation. That will make a big difference.

Comments

ejj

(I think people are missing the point about the suburbs - that people aren't necessarily THERE because of what is there, but because of what's not...I think the same goes for a lot of people in the ghetto)

Lucy English

Don't buy into this comunist/socialist anarcy. You know what will happen! All this about infrasrtuctore dont matter! Lets get us back to America...freedom, democcracy, choice! Aberaham Lincoln may have been a good president, but he is dead and he stopped slavery. Who dont wont a slave? Where I live we dont listen to what they say bout we can or cant do with our land noways. My sistere bought a chicken and put it in her yard and they told here not too, but you know what? They dont do nothin about it. Slam bam! All them naggers thinkin we dont need taxes is snuff. How you gonna pay for it then? I aint no nagger, but if i were I wouldnt shout it. and One more thing. Dont buy it about Green this and Green that. I just bought a GREEN Chevy Tahoe and it dont get not any better gas mileage than my old SILVER one!

Mannstein

The only place where living in close quarters works is in Japan. That's because the Japanese are disciplined and polite.

These are not traits especially among US inner city dwellers.

The Goracle

it was the suburbs of cities in France that were burning a few years ago, not the city centers. You're the one who knows nothing about Europe.

Obviously the BBC knows nothing about Europe and Paris as well. They actually made up a bunch of false stories and plastered them, with falsified maps, showing the locations of the fires. According to the BBC all but one fire was in Paris proper.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4212548.stm

Amazing how reputable news agencies such as the BBC simply make stories up out of thin air, post them to their web sites, and leave them there for all to see. Or, is there a possibility that the BBC is not lying and that I am correct? Hmmmmm...

Andrey Levin

There is no “best solution” for every one housing and way of life. People are different, and choose different ways of living. What I was saying is that downtown highrises in well-run city (and there are some) offer some advantages. 10, maybe 20% of people could find it more attractive than suburban house. I know quite many such people living in downtown Vancouver, who will never move to suburbia. And I know many people who will never give up their small property and suburban house even for multimillion dollar penthouse.

BTW, cities and towns occupy less than 5% of continental US. Plenty of space to triple the suburban population, and still occupy less than half of what is currently used by agriculture.


The Goracle

it was the suburbs of cities in France that were burning a few years ago, not the city centers. You're the one who knows nothing about Europe.

Obviously the BBC knows nothing about Europe and Paris as well. They actually made up a bunch of false stories and plastered them, with falsified maps, showing the locations of the fires. According to the BBC all but one fire was in Paris proper.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4212548.stm

Amazing how reputable news agencies such as the BBC will simply make stories up out of thin air, post them to their web sites, and leave them there for all to see. Or, is there a possibility that the BBC is not lying and that I am correct? Hmmmmm...

Reel$$

Trouble for Barack is the developers, and construction industry and unions rely on these housing projects. Limiting the size of cities and townships is a reasonable idea.

But to attempt to limit construction and occupation of single family dwellings will result in huge unrest. Not just unrest. Reaction. Not just reaction... Workers, families, bankers will band together, rise up and tear down totalitarians attempting these reforms.

Viva la revolucion!

creativforce

I talk about ending subsidies and I'm the socialist? Pay to play is as capitalist as you can get. I don't want to force anyone to live anywhere. I think the richest among us should live as far out as they want. Toll roads are great, but sprawl follows the US Interstates.

creativforce

Funny, I talk about ending subsidies and pay to play and that makes me the socialist? I think tollways are awesome. The one here in Northwest Indiana is completely void of sprawl. The US Interstate free way I80 that runs parrallel 6 miles south of it is the most congested, sprawl clogged highway in America. That's the difference between socialism and capitalism. Trying to get anywhere on I 80 is like standing in line for potatoes. Pay the $6 in tolls on the skyway and you can fly into Chicago. Rich people should live anywhere they want, but don't build your factories near your house where the land is cheap and ask the state to build a highway to you so that your employees can get to work. The state shouldn't foot the bill for your lifestyle--that's socialism. The Walmart near my house just moved four miles away where the land is cheap. They left the old box in town to rot. The county, state ... whoever, built new roads, new sewers and traffic lights to accomodate all the customers and employees who now have to drive out to the new Walmart. That's socialism. Walmart should have to pay for the infrastructure, if they did, it wouldn't be cheap to slash and burn neighborhoods and keep moving to cheap land. The only reason land is cheap is because it has no infrastructure. If the state said no! Walmart would improve the neighborhood instead of leaving. Socialism sucks.

The Goracle

.

Peter, Please see the BBC's news site regarding the multiple fires in the city of Paris. Yes, they even have a map that you can reference to correct your wrong thinking. Based on that map, three out of four fires were in the city of Paris proper.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4199320.stm

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Will S

You're going to have people with lowriders parking their hoopties on what little lawn they have & blasting their subwoofers..

This is problem in some suburban areas, but in urban areas, there won't be any such lawns to park on.

Noise ordinances in the city can be strictly enforced; Dutch police have the authority to confiscate amplified devices when more than one neighbor complains, for example.

Due to our excessive road infrastructure, and the amount of money necessary to maintain it, we've put the energy dependence noose around our own necks; the automobile may prove to be the downfall of the US, and sprawl is one major aspect of that problem. Oddly enough, those who are most vocal about fighting terrorism seem to forget that funneling obscene levels of oil money over to the middle east ends up in terrorists' hands.

Bryan

It's funny.. most people are only pro-choice when it fits their own purpose. I don't WANT to live in a city where police can confiscate my property. Also, the automobile will not be the downfall of the US.. leave that to socialism.

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