A Real Place to Live
It is obvious by now to any thinking American (George Bush, Sarah Palin, John Boehner, and Tea Baggers don't fall into this category), that a massive reduction in fossil fuel usage is an urgent goal for the
The "drive till you qualify" quest for dream housing in the exurbs created long commuting distances for everyday needs. Cheap, abundant fossil fuel energy supported this “separated use” growth and investment. There is no more cheap oil. Never will be. The greatest challenge for this generation will be re-inventing the way we live, which will also determine not only where we live, but how we produce food, use energy, and interact on a human rather than car-based scale. Retrofitting the suburbs into real places necessitates a comprehensive plan to support and nurture a more sustainable local economy.
Its going to be a long time before America can afford to build anything new. It must now start to fix what it broke. Most of what was built over the last 30 years is crap and can't be fixed.
But in a few years, particularly in regions with abundant natural beauty and resources, smart investment will yield places that thrive in the "new energy/new local economy", creating extraordinary value for investors and residents alike.