Tuesday, May 24, 2005

If Norwalk is Going to Encourage Suburban Sprawl, it Should at Least Insist on Public Access to the River

Even though the Norwalk River is relatively small, this development proposal might be a good chance to get some public access, even if just for fishing. The Norwalk River Watershed Association should make sure Norwalk officials insist on it.

On the other hand, everyone could just agree that the entire proposal is a bad idea: A 262-car parking garage 44 feet from the river? A combination office and residential complex, isolated from downtown Norwalk, virtually guaranteed to worsen the area's already-bad traffic?

There's a phrase for that kind of development: suburban sprawl.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not so sure that this is truly "suburban sprawl." Generally, suburban sprawl is associated with single-family dwellings with zoning laws that require large amounts of land surrounding houses. This arrangement is more clustered.

I'm not sure that building a parking lot so close to the shoreline is a great idea. Nonetheless, the community parking lot probably results in less impervious surface than individual driveways would. Still, it would be a good idea for the developer to be required to install stormwater controls for the parking lot.

9:38 PM  
Blogger Tom Andersen said...

Certainly single-family houses on large lots qualify as suburban sprawl. But my definition of suburban sprawl also includes isolated, car-dependent office parks or apartment complexes, particularly if they're proposed for an area near a parkway entrance.

Of course criticizing Norwalk -- which has allowed Route 1 and Main Street to become classic strip developments of notable ugliness --for this proposal is like criticizing a flea-ridden dog for having a tick.

This response, btw, violates my rule of ignoring innocuous comments posted by "anonymous." If you're going to keep your identify a secret, you should at least give us some important insights (not ad hominem attacks or libelous criticism) that only you have and which would get you in trouble if it were known.

1:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Tom, lighten up a bit. There wasn't anything in that anonymous post that even resembled an ad hominem attack or libelous criticism. All the writer did was challenge one of your definitions, which you later admitted was "my definition," and therefore, not necessarily the conventional one.

9:46 AM  
Anonymous Tom Andersen said...

Misunderstanding -- my apologies. I didn't mean the anonymous commenter was making ad hominem attacks or libelous statements. The point I tried to make was that his or her comments were fairly innocuous and didn't seem to merit anonymity. What does merit anonymity is information (as opposed to ad hominen atacks and libelous statements) from knowledgeable people who might get in trouble at work for sharing the information.
The truth is, I get so few comments that I've never worried about attacks. I do wonder however why people feel the need to be anonymous. But whatever.

10:09 AM  

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