Friday, September 3, 2010

Dark omen for Atlanta?

The boom and then bust of manufacture-based economies and now the crash of service-based industries, how will cities like Atlanta fare? A piece provided by the Economist examined just a few concerns for the city’s future including: growth rate, looming water shortage, and pending highway plans. “All of which makes me wonder whether Atlanta is simply approaching a point beyond which it cannot efficiently grow.”

Being a native Atlantan, the days of efficient growth have long since passed. The traffic was unbearable over fifteen years ago and a once striking skyline has surrendered to the automobile induced haze. Looming above the aging streets are full buildings deemed vacant. Adding lane upon lane to the already hemorrhaging infrastructure did little to curb the drivers commuting twenty-five miles or more outside of the city. The list could go on. Not to over simplify the problems, but these issues mainly stem from past cultural choice. When gas prices rise to over $4 a gallon again, Atlanta will face a different gridlock, one were cars never leave the garage.