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Supporting New Urbanism and the Question of Moving

morningwalk-sharon-farmersmkt-vegeSo let’s say you live in one of those cul-de-sacs that are such a no-no in the new urbanism movement. Does that mean you have to consider moving to practice what you preach as a new urbanism convert?

Of course not. While a McMansion on a cul-de-sac doesn’t appeal to me anyhow, personally I would love to move to one of the newer new urbanism developments in my community because I love the neighborhood design, the small but stylish homes and I have friends there.

I won’t be moving though because where I live allows me to conserve energy and spend less!

I’m in one of those small, post-war homes that was thankfully built near a nature conservation area, our town’s Main St., amazing libraries and museums and excellent public transportation. Looking at all those benefits helps me to keep a level head about moving.

That’s a good thing since the temptation is always there – after all I put out the Top Ten New Urbanism Communities list every year and the research involved in creating that list has me submersed in the details and attributes of some of the most attractive and affordable new urbanism communities in all the locations we would consider moving to (both in the U.S. and Canada).

Overall I think that’s a good thing. It’s an indication that more and more builders are building quality, affordable homes that regular families like ours can afford.

So keep a level head about new urbanism. Don’t feel you have to move to embrace the ideals of this movement. If you were planning on moving anyhow, then yes this is a great time to consider your options of moving to a city or a new urbanism development that embraces the close knit community feel of traditional neighborhood designs.

But if moving isn’t on your agenda, some of the more important questions to ask are:

  • Can I use public transportation more?
  • Can I buy more of our food, clothing and housewares fromĀ  local vendors and producers?
  • Can I lobby or work with community leaders to ensure that there are resources and infrastructures in place to support work-at-home-opportunities and attract more businesses to my town?

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