The production of a suburban main street: Financialization and urban design in Halifax
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Given that planning policy calls for mixed use, higher densities, street-oriented facades, walkability, and high-quality urban design, what explains the kinds of segregated, low-density, auto-oriented designs and development patterns that appear in some suburban areas? Drawing on land sales data, field surveys, and interviews with urban professionals (planners, developers, brokers, elected councillors) in Halifax, Canada, we argue that processes of financialization are generating new opportunities for the mass production of suburban landscapes lined with specific types of buildings. Alongside land-use regulations and design guidelines intended to urbanize the suburbs by promoting urban forms and sensibilities, financial processes paradoxically reproduce traditional suburban stereotypes.
Willwerth, N. and Grant, JL. 2017. The production of a suburban main street: Financialization and urban design in Halifax. Working Paper. School of Planning, Dalhousie University.