Thursday, January 20, 2005

The way we live

"The suburbs" is a huge topic -- and also a cliche magnet. Many books, movies, editorials, conversations -- and policy discussions -- revert to flimsy stuff.

A helpful typology is now available from Brian Mikelbank, in the most recent Housing Policy Debate (Vol 15, Issue 4).

Whereas the author cites too many interjurisdictional "tensions" and not enough complementarities for my tastes, his statistical work highlights the amazing variations in the suburbs -- rather than the all-white, uniform, bedroom community, rich, and well schooled stereotype that too many writers and analysts cannot seem to do without.