Donald R. Belk: What’s so wrong with density?

March 28, 2014 

What’s so wrong with density?

I was perturbed after reading the March 19 article in The Cary News about the Imagine Cary planning effort. It would seem the Committee for the Future is still stuck in a “Leave It To Beaver” mindset from the past – the image of a neighborhood as a homogeneous, single-house-on-a-lot, suburban model.

Committee members seem unable or unwilling to advocate for the alternatives of walkable, mixed-use developments that are clearly the trend for urban development going forward.

Also I was, quite frankly, offended by the comments that somehow implied that “density is bad.” Are the needs, hopes, and desires of the thousands of Cary residents (myself included) who live in apartments, townhomes, condominiums and other so-called intense developments somehow less important than those who live in single-family homes?

I recommend that the committee review the “visualizing density” website of the Lincoln Institute for Land Policy and read the introduction to Leigh Gallagher’s insightful book, “The End of the Suburbs – Where the American Dream is Moving.”

At the least, they should stop playing word games and get down to the business for which they were tasked – setting a direction for the town’s future livability and economic health.

Donald R. Belk

Cary

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