Out of Control Policy Blog

Suburbs and California's children

Famed urbanologist Joel Kotkin recently wrote this interesting piece on how the future of cities depends on their ability to evolve to be appealing places for families with children to live.

But more interesting to me is what he says about the suburbs. He opens with a quote from Jane Jacobs, "Suburbs must be a difficult place to raise children." What? The fact that families have overwhelmingly voted with their feet to raise kids in the suburbs seems to have eluded her.

In California we soon may not have that option. Thanks to state Sen. Darrell Steinberg, who's motto seems to be "I know how you should live so shut up," suburban development is likely to be a rarity in CA.

Instead, local governments are pushed to require "mixed-use" development--high rise apartments and condo's or dense multiplex housing, mixed in with commercial. Forget about having a nice yard as a safe place for your kids to play without you having to be there to watch them. So you Californians who have kids or plan to, but don't yet have a suburban or rural home with a yard, don't wait, get it now, before they become the most rare and expensive properties in the state.

Adrian Moore is Vice President, Policy


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