Tag Archives: zoning

Why are Stockton’s parking lots so big and empty?

“We need these extra parking spaces for holiday shoppers.” This is the standard response from city planners or big box retailers when asked to explain why there is so much empty parking at newer shopping centers. While these parking lots sit empty nearly the entire year, apologists will invoke the holiday rush between Thanksgiving and […]

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Sprawl is not a product of the free market

A common retort you will hear from sprawl defenders is that our built environment is shaped by the free market. They believe that the single-family tract home developments we are accustomed to today are the result of consumer preference, and if people wanted more apartments or townhomes, they would already exist. Therefore, smart growth must […]

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How better zoning can curb crime

Last year, I wrote about the effect that planning can have on crime, noting that a well-planned city or community can have a direct affect on public safety. Even more recently, I have mused about how crime seems to revolve around Stockton’s big box retailers, namely Walmart. Probably not coincidentally, some new research has emerged […]

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Policies to save farmland: How cities use different planning tools to curb excessive growth

Today, the city council will discuss settling a long-standing lawsuit with developers over a provision that is intended to preserve open space and farmland within large developments. As it stands, the Agriculture Mitigation Ordinance requires developers to acquire conservation agreement for land equivalent to the size of the development for projects over 40 acres. Under […]

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