The New Pioneers: How Entrepreneurs Are Defying the System to Rebuild the Cities and Towns of America

The New Pioneers: How Entrepreneurs Are Defying the System to Rebuild the Cities and Towns of America

by J.P. Faber


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Imagine a world where there are no building codes, no licensing requirements, no permit fees, no inspectors—no rules or regulations, only common sense and the desire to build something better. This is the world that forged America, the land where the early pioneers and town developers thrived.

But this type of open environment is long gone.

It’s prohibitively expensive for young entrepreneurs to start a business today. In fact, it is almost impossible to build anything unless you are part of a larger organization that has the expertise and resources to navigate the system. Our municipal, state, and federal codes, from business permitting and OSHA compliance to occupational licenses and tax requirements, have blossomed out of control.

Today’s innovators and builders must ignore the rules, go to places where the rules are not enforced, or figure out how to get around them. The New Pioneers is the story of Americans—millennials, immigrants, artists, and entrepreneurs—who are doing just that in cities across the nation, including Detroit, San Diego, New Orleans, Phoenix, and many more.

Written by journalist J.P. Faber, The New Pioneers shows the entrepreneurs of today, especially those in urban areas, how they can work around obstacles to create wealth and revive our cities. Small business owners and individual builders have the power to fix what’s broken in society—if only they are allowed to do so.

This book is an optimistic look at how we can rebuild our cities and jump-start more small businesses. It shows how we can make far better use of our resources, both human and physical. The New Pioneers paves a road to success in a crumbling world. It’s time for the little guy to have a fighting chance to get ahead once again.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781944648305
Publisher: BenBella Books, Inc.
Publication date: 06/13/2017
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

J.P. Faber is an award-winning editor and writer with more than 25 years of journalism experience. Most of those years were spent editing business magazines, focusing on stories about how individual business leaders and entrepreneurs succeeded—or failed. Among his past publications, Faber was editor-in-chief of international business magazines China Trade, Latin Trade and Latin CEO; city regional business publications South Florida CEO and Miami Business; and city regional lifestyle monthly South Florida Magazine.

Faber is also the author of The Peebles Principles, written about Donahue Peebles, a former Senate page who became one of the wealthiest African American businessmen in the U.S. Two years ago Faber was hired by the Knight Foundation to report on the phenomenon of Lean Urbanism, situations in which entrepreneurs and small builders are able to create new businesses because of lighter—and leaner—regulations. That became the basis of The New Pioneers.

Table of Contents

Preface: The Birth of Lean Urbanism Andrés Duany xi

Introduction: The New Pioneers and the Lessons of Lean Urbanism 1

Chapter 1 Detroit: Dawn of the Dead 9

Chapter 2 The Cotton District and Seaside: The Time Machines 45

Chapter 3 Wynwood, Miami: Birth of the Cool 77

Chapter 4 New Orleans: A Tale of Two Cities 101

Chapter 5 Cottage Square and The Gulf: Language and Recycling 143

Chapter 6 Two Schools of Thought: Going Small, Rural, and Urban 165

Chapter 7 Phoenix: House of the Rising Sun 197

Chapter 8 Conclusions: The Lessons of Lean Urbanism 237

Resources: Resources, Connections, Community 247

Index 249

About the Author 258

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“I predicted years ago that the idiotic and unreformable over-burden of building and zoning codes would eventually have to be ignored by anyone seeking to rebuild this country at the small scale and the fine grain. That outcome has now been realized in Lean Urbanism, a set of ingenious work-arounds for those determined to rescue our dying towns and cities. This book is the first herald of that momentous revolution.”

—James Howard Kunstler, author of The Geography of Nowhere and The Long Emergency

“This book is one of the few collections of real world case studies showing that if you reduce regulations and move toward a more libertarian model, huge creative energies will be released and wealth created. This book tells that story in a highly readable and concrete way that makes the abstract principles of a free society very real and immediate.”

—Jennifer Grossman, CEO of The Atlas Society

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