Suburbia is Subsidized: Here's the Math [ST07]
Not Just Bikes Not Just Bikes
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 Published On Premiered Mar 7, 2022

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Car-dependent suburbia is subsidized by productive urban places. That's why American cities are broke. But how bad is it, and who is subsidizing who?

Watch the rest of my Strong Towns series here:    • Strong Towns  

Urban3 is a consulting company that helps cities better understand the economic impact of development. They have worked with many American cities to better understand and visualize the costs of development, and uncover which properties are productive, and which are not. Some municipalities have been willing to share that information, and it has provided a fascinating glimpse into the financial problems caused by sprawling car-centric suburban development.

This video explores some of the cities analyzed by Urban3, and provides some lessons that cities should learn about how to build Strong Towns.

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Additional Reading & References:

The Real Reason Your City Has No Money
Strong Towns

Poor Neighborhoods Make the Best Investments
Strong Towns

About Urban3
Urban3 takes a different approach to land value economics, property and retail tax analysis, and community design. They empower communities with new insights into their own data. Their work makes a quantifiable case for better city planning, urban design, and smarter growth whiling backing up their stories with facts and figures. Urban3 demystify tax codes, government jargon, and municipal finance data, allowing communities to clearly understand the economic impact of development.

About Strong Towns
Strong Towns is a non-profit organization and an international movement dedicated to making communities across the United States and Canada financially strong and resilient.

Eugene, Oregon Zoning Map

Photo Credits:
Chase Bank tower, downtown Lafayette
By TheLionHasSeen - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

20190224 19 Lafayette, Louisiana
David Wilson (Flickr)

Congress & Jefferson Streets, Lafayette, Louisiana. Science Museum at right.
By SnippyHolloW -, CC BY-SA 2.0,

This video contains video licensed from Geddy Images

0:00 Intro
0:05 Introduction to Lafayette
0:49 Traditional Development and Tax Revenue
1:38 An ROI for Cities
2:17 You Need a Per-Acre Analysis
3:23 Mix-use Walkable vs. Car-dependent Suburbs
4:18 The Strong Towns Analysis
4:48 The Poor Subsidize the Wealthy
5:24 It's Not Just Lafayette
6:32 Exactly Who Subsizes Who?
7:31 It's Everywhere
8:25 What Should We Do?
9:17 Conclusion
9:37 Patreon Shout-out
9:55 Outtro


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