Wednesday, September 16, 2015

[REDUX] Western sprawl and the incredibly successful efforts by NIMBY's (and enablers) in Palm Beach County to help fuel it

[This is a re-post from June; just as applicable now in September.]

Below is the New Home Locator (NHL) that you'll find each Friday in The Palm Beach Post, page R4:
Note all the new communities in western Palm Beach County. Continue reading the post below you'll discover some very surprising numbers.
A new community in "Lake Worth" was featured in the NHL [and again in the latest September issue] which is nowhere near the City of Lake Worth. Here is an excerpt which I penned humorously in response:
Last week the coastal City of Lake Worth was featured in the NHL. Lake Worth is near another coastal city called the Town of Palm Beach (33480); you may have heard of that town. Of course, everyone knows Lake Worth is a vibrant City recovering quite nicely from The Great Recession. The City has a gorgeous public "BEACH!", a hip and artsy downtown, and an activist community on the cutting-edge of performance art.
Here is the new community in "Lake Worth" that was featured in the NHL courtesy of PBC's newspaper of record:
Homes complete with resort-style pool and cabana.
Humor aside, 'Abbington' is another community being developed in western PBC, west of I-95. Why are all these new communities sprouting up out west? Partly due to the incredibly successful efforts in PBC by the NIMBY's along the I-95 corridor and east to Florida's eastern coast. Below is a video showing some NIMBY's in action (these particular NIMBY's are mostly composed of NIMBY's borrowed/shared from other communities in PBC [they're good at sharing resources]):

What the NIMBY's in the video above are protesting is a 'forest' in Palm Beach Gardens located immediately adjacent to I-95. The Kolter Group plans to in-fill the Alton Tract (formerly "Briger Forest") to build new homes in Palm Beach Gardens. The Alton Tract is in the general location of #3 in the map below:
This is from the NHL zooming in on PBC.
By the numbers will show how successful the NIMBY's have been at forcing development out west; what's called colloquially 'western sprawl'. First, note the #8#9, and #10 on the map (area in pink in the map) are in Martin County and will not be addressed. PBC is separated on the map into North county (in green) and South county (in yellow). Here are the numbers:
  • There are a total of 37 "New Communities" on the map
  • Number west of I-95: 26
  • Number west of the Turnpike: 10
  • Number east of I-95: 11
  • Number east of I-95 and north of Northlake Blvd (#14 on map): 9
  • Number east of I-95, south of Northlake Blvd, and all the way south to Boca Raton: 2 (TWO)
The NIMBY's have been extremely successful at saving their coastal charm but it has come at the expense of new roads, the environment, infrastructure out west, and more cars, trucks, and fossil fuels to service what is called 'Western Sprawl'. Congratulations.