Animosity Between City Dwellers and Suburbanites — Really?

Animosity Between City Dwellers and Suburbanites — Really?

An opinion piece for the New York Times discusses the concept of saving suburbia. To no one’s surprise the commentary illuminates all the strife between urbanites and suburbanites.

Alison Arieff, formerly of Dwell magazine, has been pondering the future of American suburbs. She’s not the first. Just check out this interview we ran with Christopher Leinberger, who suggests that residents fleeing the suburbs could be much worse than the urban flight of the ’60s and ’70s.

One unanticipated discovery that became clear from the commentary was just how deep an animosity exists between urban dwellers and suburbanites. Perhaps “saving” was the wrong verb to use in the title. True, there are many fantastic suburbs (I grew up in one) but that doesn’t negate the reality of places like Rio Vista, Calif., where an upscale 855-home development called Hearth and Home at Liberty (a name so cruelly ironic it surpasses irony altogether) was abandoned last year, leaving graded streets, a few model homes and little else.

Diana Lind is the former executive director and editor in chief of Next City.

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