In Response to: Built to Last [6]

The principles behind the New Urbanist “smart cities” (January issue) might prove presciently providential if applied at the policy level and writ large in a macro sense by state and federal government. The proposed urban compounds forming a ring around an enclosed central green space suggests a bold urban plan for an entirely new America. 

A graduated century-long relocation of small towns and cities from the midlands into vibrant urban corridors along each coast could provide refuge for the rapidly disappearing habitat and wildlife of our continent, while simultaneously eliminating the cost and burden of maintaining a sprawling infrastructure for a scattered population. 

Architect Daniel Burnham, who helped to rebuild Chicago after its Great Fire is attributed with saying, “Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men’s blood.” There is indeed marvelous potential for magic in the New Urbanism if only we might produce the will to think big.