Town centers are the new death panels
Photo: Matthew ReichbachOh, those Teabaggers — always smacking you in the face with something unpleasant. This time it’s self-righteous outrage at the socialist erosion of our Freedom Sprawl. Because in the real America, you get in the car just to go to your kitchen.
The Virginia state government is moving to require “urban development areas” (UDAs), regions that encourage denser development. But UDAs threaten the Tea Party’s American paradise, in which families drive their giant vehicles 30 miles to the nearest Walmart, and they’re not taking it too well.
Dense living areas equal serfdom and slavery: Here’s Donna Holt of the Tea Party-affiliated Virginia Campaign for Liberty:
Eco-extremists are heavily funded for their lobby effort to grab and preserve up to 90% of all the land that would be off limits to humans and move you into government controlled high-density feudalistic transit villages.
They use global warming and environmental disaster to scare the citizens and politicians into abolishing private property ownership.
If they have their way, single family homes will be a thing of the past. We’d become mere lease holders of the homes we live in. …
The right to own private property is as sacred as life and liberty.
You either have the right to own property or you become property.
Or possibly they’re livable, sustainable communities: Here’s a summary of UDAs from Greater Greater Washington:
The purpose of UDAs is not only to allow the concentration of growth in certain areas (thus relieving the pressure on others) but also to guide the design of such areas to ensure they are livable and attractive environments. The legislation explicitly calls for “new urbanism and traditional-neighborhood design.”
The essential criteria are spelled out clearly: pedestrian-friendly road design, interconnection of streets, preservation of natural areas, mixed-use neighborhoods, reduction of front and side setbacks, among other things. Minimum densities are set by floor-to-area ratio for commercial and dwelling-units-per-acre for residential development.
Or maybe they’re a GOP dream: Here’s what the guy who originated UDAs, Virginia delegate Clifford Athey, said about them in 2006:
Our countryside is getting eaten up by five-acre tracts,” declares Athey. “We need to get back to a model that worked well for centuries — people should be living in densely packed urban areas.” (A brief aside, when Athey talks about “densely packed urban areas,” he’s thinking Winchester, not Manhattan.) “If we create an incentive for developers to do that, we can accomplish what should be good for everyone.”
Take off your shoes, because we’re about to knock your socks off: this guy’s a Republican. UDAs: Truly bringing together people of every political persuasion, as long as they are sane.