Case Study about Growth Management: Boulder, Colorado
Introduction: Growth management and “smart growth” are the only plausible responses thus far to the sprawl, the geography of nowhere, that characterizes twenty-first century America. Boulder’s experiments with growth management have spanned four decades. As a result, Boulder’s successes and failures and the various paths it has explored may hold lessons for others who are searching for effective growth management measures. Growth — particularly in the form of urban sprawl — is on the minds of many in the western states. It is projected, for example, that the population of Colorado will increase by 1,920,000 people during the period from 1996 through 2025 — an increase of over twenty-five percent.
Evaluating Growth Management: Gray stresses that all of the above factors must be considered simultaneously. Focus on one to the exclusion of others will, in his view, cause systemic distortions and may cause as many problems as it solves. For example, exclusive focus on the rate of growth fails to recognize issues presented by a problematic type of growth. Thus, residential growth rate management without some constraint on commercial and industrial growth is likely to cause a jobs/housing imbalance over time.
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