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Taking a Closer Look

Density Without High-Rises?

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When it comes to land development, Americans seem to dislike two things: too much sprawl and too much density. Over the last 50 years, the pendulum has clearly swung in the direction of spread-out single use, drive everywhere, low density development.

Now the pendulum is swinging back. Today, high energy prices, smart growth, new urbanism, infill development, transit-oriented  development, and sustainability concerns are all coalescing to foster more compact, mixed-use, walkable, higher density development.

End of excerpt

photo of Ed McMahonEd McMahon is one of the country’s most incisive analysts of planning and land use issues and trends. He holds the Charles Fraser Chair on Sustainable Development and is a Senior Resident Fellow at the Urban Land Institute in Washington, DC. McMahon is a frequent speaker at conferences on planning and land development.

Over the past 21 years, we’ve been pleased to have published more than two dozen articles by McMahon in the Planning Commissioners Journal, and now on

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