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Old 09-28-2009, 06:59 PM
 
206 posts, read 400,156 times
Reputation: 228

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Quote:
Originally Posted by claremarie View Post
The answer is that "we" build houses where people want to live. If families don't want to live in high-density housing, whether close-in or further out, then they won't buy or rent in those developments, and future developers won't build them, no matter how many tax or density incentives "we" throw at them.
"We" build houses where our government zones a residential area. Will "we" also be demanding tax increases to pay for the infrastructure improvements as we sprawl further and further out? Will "we" be lobbying our congressman to pursue questionable foreign policy objectives when rising energy prices make it too expensive to commute 50 miles into work? Will "we" be outraged when our 1 hour commute in 2009 becomes a 2 hour commute in 2020?
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Old 09-28-2009, 07:21 PM
 
2,462 posts, read 8,042,957 times
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"Will "we" be outraged when our 1 hour commute in 2009 becomes a 2 hour commute in 2020?"

Maybe. Then "we" can sell our house and move closer to work. Or we can move to another metropolitan area and start over. Or we can accept the space/time tradeoff and deal with the two-hour commute.
In general, we can make the best decisions possible for our particular situations, and stop expecting other people to solve the problems we create thereby.
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Old 09-28-2009, 07:54 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
593 posts, read 2,243,601 times
Reputation: 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcity View Post
We actually have the best example of city planning right in our backyard: Arlington.
Which reminds me, they made a pretty good documentary about the planning and development of Arlington and you can watch it on the town's site: Arlington's Smart Growth Journey : Arlington Virginia Network : Arlington, Virginia

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScranBarre View Post
I suppose the counter-argument from you will be "why not get a few roomies and alternate between who sleeps on the floor and who sleeps on the beds?" I encourage density but discourage forcing people to totally shun privacy by living elbow-to-elbow.
ScranBarre, I suggested in another thread that you get a roommate and move into an apartment in Arlington. I'm just confused, because I didn't suggest that this would mean you sleeping on the floor... Instead, a really nice 2BR apt within 5 min walk from the Clarendon Metro rents for about $2400. Split w/ a roommate (just one), you'd be paying the same as you are right now. You'd have your own bedroom, and be in the walkable utopia that you so desire!

One of the nice things about the DC metro area is that we have a lot of choices available. Some of us live in the suburbs, and others in more urban areas. Of course that means making tradeoffs (i.e. getting a roommate), but that's life! I work with a lot of young co-workers, and I'm in my mid-20's...and every single one of us has a roommate! None of us are able to live in a 1BR alone.

I totally sympathize with your critiques of the sprawl here, but you've got to realize that everyone that is 22 and living in DC or Arlington has a roommate.
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Old 09-28-2009, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Virginia
39 posts, read 143,081 times
Reputation: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by claremarie View Post
"Will "we" be outraged when our 1 hour commute in 2009 becomes a 2 hour commute in 2020?"

Maybe. Then "we" can sell our house and move closer to work. Or we can move to another metropolitan area and start over. Or we can accept the space/time tradeoff and deal with the two-hour commute.
In general, we can make the best decisions possible for our particular situations, and stop expecting other people to solve the problems we create thereby.

Co-sign...

My personal mantra is that "things happen, if you let them happen"...
there are always some options

I have been in NOVA just over a year and it is a good fit for now. I originate from B-more and NYC and it is too many REAL issues for us now with kids. I used to commute from Baltimore to Mclean (when gas was $4/gal), so I have felt the pain...but I changed our situation with some sacrifices. The current pace and layout of our area is great for us. I have co-workers who live and/or work in Arlington and that would have been cool for us but it logistically, it won't work for us now (due to the job location).

I guess my current 15-minute commute helps also...
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Old 09-28-2009, 08:13 PM
 
2,688 posts, read 5,951,545 times
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Going back a couple pages to Scran-Barre (not going to quote his verbose responses), it confirms what I said.

1. WE are supposed to live vertically, but not HIM: He could easily afford it with a roommate, but no, he doesn't want one (cue the plaintive refrain about needing privacy for his dates).

2.) Everyone in the world is driving from where he lives to where he works, clogging up the roads for him, but NOT ONE of them is commuting to the same area in the same time frame in order to carpool with him. Has he even made the effort through Craig's List or advertising or one of the ride-share services I always see advertised? As for the buses not running at the right times, well this looks pretty close to me:

http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/connector/pdf/574.pdf

3.) Again, simple solution: roommate(s). Like everyone else your age has. Like most of us had when we were your age.

4.) Some might argue that one person occupying a single-family home is an excessive amount of home for that one person. Why would it be justifiable for one person to own a two-bedroom single-family home with a yard but "excessive" for a four/five/six-person family to own a four-bedroom home with a yard?

5.) He HAS to go driving around all over the place on weekends but no one else needs to -- they're just doing it to be annoying and get in his way.

There's a word for people who practice what they preach. It's called integrity. As for people who do the opposite, well ...
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,834,609 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcity View Post
We actually have the best example of city planning right in our backyard: Arlington. As I mentioned in another post, it's won national awards for its urban planning. It's gone from an also-ran decaying inner suburb to a shining example of what can happen when you cluster things around transit. If you look at the proliferation of newer office buildings there, it's clear that Arlington has attracted more businesses since deciding to go the "smart growth" route, and it's done it without taxing people to death. One way to do this is to work with developers to fund some of the smart growth improvements in exchange for more density. The developers love this because more density = more units = more money for them.
I'm glad you've found a place you like, I wish you could show the same respect to me. Arlington sounds like a wonderful place for people who like living in a town like that. I know a lot of people who LOVE Arlington, and I've often recommended it on this forum. I lived there when I was 21 and single, and when I was that age I thought it was great.

But I also think the outer suburbs are great. At this stage in my life they appeal more than Arlington. And I resent the idea that every neighborhood needs to be turned into a clone of Arlington just because that's the way you like to live.

I've outgrown the "urban" phase of my life. I no longer like living in tight spaces, I like the air and light that comes into my house because I live on a street where the homes are not jammed up next to each other in straight little rows. I love growing my own vegetables, I love being surrounded by trees.

I have news for you: I have the right to live the way I wish. And I have the right to be respected, without having a bunch of self-righteous 20 somethings telling me I need to be "fixed" because I've outgrown the desire for urban living.

If my lifestyle choice means that 20 years from now I'll have to deal with increased traffic that's my choice. Isn't it. You're in Arlington, it's not your problem. You won't ever have to deal with the traffic out in the suburbs--it's my problem--and it's a problem I'm willing to face. And the same goes for all the other predictions for how life in the suburbs will be so "horrid." We're the ones who'll be dealing with these situations if they happen, not you. So why not just enjoy life in your part of town and let us enjoy life in ours?

Why not think of suburban living as an alternative lifestyle? Isn't it good to have different options, so that people can live in the manner that makes them happy? If you want a more urban style of living, Arlington's a great place. But the suburbs don't need to be "fixed" just because this is not the way that you wish to live.
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,834,609 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yankeesfan View Post
Again, simple solution: roommate(s). Like everyone else your age has. Like most of us had when we were your age.
Here here!

I had a couple of roommates when I was Scran's age and it was fine. If you really can't stand the idea of having someone else around, find someone with a different work schedule than you. That way you'll never even see him. Arlington sounds like a much better place for you.

And after you've lived there a few weeks and discovered it isn't paradise (because no place is) it sounds like Arlingtonians are much more in tune with your "passion." They'll just love having you tell them all the ways it needs to be "fixed" so that it pleases you.

Why not check Craig's List today? You can't "fix" Virginia but you can fix your living situation. So what if you have a little time left on your lease, if you really "don't think you can bear it" anymore it sounds like it's time to move. Get a roommate and find a place closer to work and closer to the city.
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:23 AM
 
1,592 posts, read 3,081,907 times
Reputation: 1152
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScranBarre View Post
What can be done to successfully retrofit suburban "experiments" gone awry, such as Tyson's Corner or Reston? What can be done to better distribute the affluence in our area (i.e. not all of the uber-affluent in Great Falls/not all of the struggling working poor in Sterling Park)? How will this all be funded? Is this area capable of being "fixed?"

Discuss!
The awful urban sprawl that is Northern Virginia is the result of a federal government that's gotten way too big. Fixing Northern Virginia? I don't think there's a realistic fix. I think if you don't like it, find a city that you can live with. Seems like the cities where there are jobs are usually pretty ugly and congested (not including the standard issue central park feature and historic district) -- this can be said for cities throughout the world. I guess that's why we have retirement to look forward to.
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:51 AM
 
7,910 posts, read 7,242,975 times
Reputation: 6258
Reston's fine. The Urban Town Center is screwed up. It's essentially an outdoor mall so it devotes almost as much space to parking as it does to space for stores, offices, and apartments. They also never should've built that huge New Domion Parkway that feeds into Fairfax County Parkway and divides the Town Center district in half.
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:28 AM
 
7,910 posts, read 7,242,975 times
Reputation: 6258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gottasay View Post
The awful urban sprawl that is Northern Virginia is the result of a federal government that's gotten way too big. Fixing Northern Virginia? I don't think there's a realistic fix. I think if you don't like it, find a city that you can live with. Seems like the cities where there are jobs are usually pretty ugly and congested (not including the standard issue central park feature and historic district) -- this can be said for cities throughout the world. I guess that's why we have retirement to look forward to.
There are places, such as Springfield and Fort Meyer, that are urban but still have a lot of warehouses, low-rise office buildings, and decaying shopping strip centers. They should be redeveloping and maximizing existing areas in the manner that Arlington has done over the last 20 years. Even downtown Rosslyn is going to undergo a facelift with 35-story mixed-use skyscrapers replacing the 12-story office buildings.
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