I began receiving a newsletter from David Stookey, who seems to ask a lot of the same questions that I find myself asking as I try to navigate the future for myself and my family. This article in particular, about the likely increase in value of mixed-use housing, appealed to me because (you guessed it) we live in a mixed-use neighborhood. From “People Will Pay to Walk”:
A housing boom?
Demand for one type of neighborhood is predicted to grow fast.
We’ve been looking at the long-term advantages of living where there are shops, schools, businesses, health clinics, residences all jumbled together. A “mixed-use neighborhood” planners call it.
Many of these advantages derive from the rising costs of energy, healthcare, and taxes forecast for this decade – the stuff I’ve been writing about. Others come from the retirement preferences of baby boomers.
–saving transportation costs as fuel prices rise
–walking and biking more as health costs rise
–commuting without traffic to nearby jobs
–getting to know more neighbors
–using nearby public transit for longer trips
–finding smaller homes, apartments, and yards
–enjoying libraries, art, music, theater close to home
I very much like that I can walk to my kids’ elementary school, the grocery store, my office, my church, the local pool (which BETTER open again this year!) and a host of other places. Also, this makes me think of some of the incredible houses in the Elmwood section of Providence, which will (in an optimistic vision of the future) become a strong middle-class mixed-use neighborhood. If David Stookey is right, there are some bargains to be had on houses in our many interesting mixed-use neighborhoods across Rhode Island.