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Stop Sprawl
What Can YOU Do About Sprawl?

This Sprawl is our Sprawl! Can We Walk the Talk?

We tend to pin the blame for sprawl on developers, politicians, planners - anyone but ourselves. In fact, though development patterns are influenced by government policy and business, they are also the product of individual choices: where we choose to live, how far and how often we travel, how we get from point a to point b. We make choices every day that can support our call for healthy communities, thriving rural areas, and unspoiled wilderness. Here are some practical strategies for people who would like to combat sprawl with actions as well as words:

  1. Rent Smart, Buy Smart! Smart Growth isn't just about development; it's about where we choose to live. The next time you move, you may want to consider how your choices as a consumer can affect sprawl. By choosing to live in a home that is central to your work and daily needs, and is accessible to public transit, you make a direct investment in Smart Growth. Fringe development may offer more square footage for your dollar, but quality of life can't be measured in square feet! By reducing our reliance on automobiles and living in central, sustainable neighborhoods, we send a clear anti-sprawl message by demonstrating that we value community, public space, and open country.

  2. Drive Responsibly, Drive Less! Dependence on the automobile and sprawl go hand in hand. Those who want to do something about sprawl can take concrete action on a daily basis by becoming aware of their travel patterns and choosing to drive less. Some alternatives include walking, bicycling, using public transit, consolidating automobile trips, owning one, fuel-efficient vehicle per family, and carpooling. Patronizing local businesses will also reduce the amount of time spent driving while strengthening the fabric of your community.

  3. Think Ahead! A booming population, fractured communities, and unsustainable levels of consumption have all contributed to what we now call sprawl. Consider limiting your family size. Support the empowerment and education of women here and abroad so they have fertility choices. Combat the isolation of children, the elderly, the poor, and the disabled by ensuring that your community offers equal access to goods and services for those who cannot or choose not to drive. If the American Dream is to be enjoyed by generations to come, it must be redefined on a global level. The world's population stands at six billion and counting, and every one of those people deserves a decent future. This is jeopardized by the rapid resource consumption and waste that come with sprawling development patterns. With responsible stewardship, we can have healthy communities and a living planet.

  4. Get Involved! Your voice counts. Some ideas:

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