Report | 1996

Paying for Growth, Prospering from Development


This paper addresses the difference between growth and development, the reasons communities seek growth, the ways in which local governments unwittingly worsen growth problems in their attempts to solve them, and how communities can develop viable local economies without growth. Residents of many growing towns and cities are learning the hard way that growth is not the solution to their economic woes. While they enjoy the benefits of growth, they also are vexed by the problems it causes: traffic congestion, crime, long commutes, air pollution, increasing intolerance, disrespect for traditional leadership, and increasingly cutthroat competition in local business. Rapid growth often causes higher rents, housing shortages, spiraling costs, and demands for higher wages to meet the higher cost of living.