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April 25, 2010


It sounds like what you're really advocating here is urban supply and demand.

That is, instead of resuscitating existing communities, let them die and encourage their current residents to relocate to neighborhoods with more functional services, thereby creating a flood of cheaper labor that will enable additional business growth at reduced rates.

Then, when those areas become so densely packed (a la NYC) that people just need to "get away," they can move back to (and reclaim) smaller, less-congested areas. At that rate, Braddock might only be two or three suburban rings away from being "reborn" as a desirable suburb, rather than being a continual, unwanted drain on the economy.

You can't make people want what they don't need (unless you work in politics or advertising).

Yea, definitely. I think the market should be smoothed (aka remove all home buying incentives). However, the part about cheap labor would actually be the opposite. People usually only move if they're improving their situation - so they would lower their real (CPI adjusted) wages unless they were gaining something else (better climate, closer family, etc.).

I'm not sure Braddock will ever truly be reborn. It has no advantages in architecture, institutions, culture, transportation, etc. compared to a host of areas in this same "ring" of Pittsburgh. However, the trend nationwide is towards cities, and Pittsburgh has ALOT of holding capacity left for transplants.

I'm with you - it's a pull, not push, type of campaign. However, as long as we're using tax money to help people, we need to think about ROI / multiplier effects of our actions.

- Nick

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