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New Urbanism’s Economic Achilles Heel, at

… a town or a city needs three key elements to be healthy. Firstly, a sense of place that includes the sacred is important to people to provide a basis for spiritual involvement. The city must then be able to reliably deliver safety and security to its inhabitants in order to grow and mature. And lastly, a city must provide the means of employment for its inhabitants.

New Urbanism, in its quest to dictate the physical form of an urban development, has ignored the last key element. An examination of New Urbanism in developments in Central Florida shows a glaring lack of employment, raising questions about their sustainability and long-term viability.

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Why New Urbanism Fails, by Chris Dewolf at Planetizen:

One of North America’s largest New Urbanist developments is McKenzie Towne in Calgary, Alberta. Located several miles from the downtown area, McKenzie Towne embodies all the flaws I see in modern New Urbanism: segregated zones, an inadvertent reliance on the car, a contrived atmosphere. And while the original section of the development contains a wide variety of mixed density housing, it was recently announced that new sections will separate housing types from each other – yet another similarity between standard suburbia and New Urbanist suburbia. Wendell Cox, a staunch critic of the New Urbanism, said it best when he wrote that beneath McKenzie Towne’s neotraditional exterior “beats the heart of suburbia.”

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