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The End of the Suburbs: Where the American Dream Is Moving [NOOK Book]

Overview

According to Fortune’s Leigh Gallagher, powerful social, economic, and demographic forces are converging to render the suburbs unnecessary, and even undesirable, for an everincreasing number of Americans.

Gallagher introduces us to a cast of innovators who are redefining the American dream away from the traditional bucolic subdivision. She reveals why the decline of the ...
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The End of the Suburbs: Where the American Dream Is Moving

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Overview

According to Fortune’s Leigh Gallagher, powerful social, economic, and demographic forces are converging to render the suburbs unnecessary, and even undesirable, for an everincreasing number of Americans.

Gallagher introduces us to a cast of innovators who are redefining the American dream away from the traditional bucolic subdivision. She reveals why the decline of the suburbs isn’t a tragedy, but will ultimately lead to stronger, happier, and healthier communities for all of us.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The suburbs are in many ways a uniquely American phenomenon—no other nation has them in such abundance. But their future is in doubt. Gallagher, assistant managing editor at Fortune, marshals ample evidence that the suburbs are in decline, as the financial crisis, long-term demographic trends, and increased environmental awareness conspire to drive Americans away from residential subdivisions. “Simply speaking, more and more Americans don’t want to live there anymore,” she writes. Through conversations with home builders, designers, and consumers, and a review of relevant data concerning suburban real estate, Gallagher heralds a future of “smaller-scale” communities and urban spaces characterized by walk-ability, socioeconomic diversity, and mixed-use development. The promise of more human-centered design will appeal to many readers. Gallagher’s ideal community seems to be a combination of Brooklyn’s Park Slope and Media, Penn., her own childhood suburb. Many of Gallagher’s ideas are more concerned with rejecting past excesses than with offering truly new perspectives. The same statistics and experts are quoted throughout this short tome, giving one the feeling of driving past a series of identical cul-de-sacs. (Aug.)
Kirkus Reviews
Fortune editor and public speaker Gallagher presents illuminating, persuasive data on the recent preference for vibrant city life over softer suburbia. An admitted West Village "city girl," the author reminisces about her "almost comically idyllic" childhood in suburban Media, Pa., and then smoothly examines how attitudes about the upholstered American dream of life in a bedroom community with "a house and a yard" have permanently shifted. She attributes this urban renaissance to several factors: lengthy, impractical commutes; environmental consciousness; an influx of poverty-stricken citizens into the suburbs forcing the wealthy to the city; changing familial demographics; and, most importantly, the economic crash that either plunged many mortgage-bound homeowners underwater or made them fear foreclosure. This point is highlighted best with Gallagher's story of her drive through a once-flourishing subdivision in Las Vegas, now riddled with foreclosed homes poorly camouflaged by desperate realtors. The author presents suburbia from a historical perspective that's entertaining and educative and juxtaposes the old with the new using unfiltered opinions from builders, homeowners, "sprawl refugees" who fight for suburban redevelopment, and developers pushing rural, mixed-use "city replicas." Though she focuses on a marked downturn in suburban affinity, Gallagher's reportage is evenhanded and comprehensively researched. In fairness, she notes that there are a large number of suburbs attempting their own reinvention in an effort to adapt to the changing climate of smaller communities and the myriad challenges they face. Good or bad, "a new kind of Great Migration is taking place," though the author admits it's still too early to elaborate further on any concrete solutions for those still harboring that pastoral American dream. A somewhat melancholic reality report made pleasant and palatable by the author's congenial delivery and promising vision.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101608180
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 8/1/2013
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 200,035
  • File size: 7 MB

Meet the Author


Leigh Gallagher is an assistant managing editor at Fortune and a frequent guest on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, among other national television and radio news shows. She lives in New York City.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2013

    Interesting read

    A quick read, but it makes a good case. The argument seems most applicable to large, congested cities.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2014

    Kapila

    Name: Kapila, obviously. Kapila Feziro.
    <p>Gender: Female
    <p>Age: My solarsweeps is my bis, yo.
    <p>Looks: Light grey skin, waist length curly black hair, orange eyes, her horns curl back away from her face and make a sharp point to her behind her ears, they're are pointed at the tips. She normally wears her trademark 'hipster' glasses, a red shirt with her zodiac sign, which is a scorpio, in black. Black jeans and red combat boots.
    <p>Zodiac Sign: Scorpio!
    <p>Crush: GaMzEe! Ugh. *mouth waters.*
    <p>Weird Traits: Pointed ears, hot tempered but nothing like KarKat, and her glasses.
    <p>Typing Style: captalizes 'o' 'c' and 'e'. Nothing else and uses correct grammar.
    <p>*LuCiddaggEr*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2014

    &starf Illuxa &starf

    Name: Illuxa Mairen <p>
    Age: 15 <p>
    Gender: Female <p>
    Appearance: Like most trolls, Illuxa has grey skin and black hair. Her hair is chin length and curly. Her eyes are orange, like her horns, which are short, curved, and pointy at the tip. She wears a black tank top, grey arm warmers, grey jeans, and is usually barefoot. <p>
    Personality: Illuxa is kind, funny, and sometimes sassy. But her heart is cold and she likes to be alone, in her room, trolling humans. <p>
    Crush: *whispers* Sollux... don't tell him! <p>
    Matesprit: Open <p>
    How she Types: Hi ThErE!~ WhAt'S Up?~ <p>
    Trolltag: IllusionalDreamer <p>
    Other: LeAvE Me AlOnE!~

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

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