"Smart Growth" and "New Urbanism" Compared with "Large Lot Zoning" (Tom Lane) [ Home Page – Click Here]

(May 17, 2017) – Traditional "Large Lot Zoning" is "Greener" than "Smart Growth" within Urban Growth Boundaries . . . Copyright 2009 – 2017 . . . Tom Lane . . . Photographing California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington.

Wendell Cox, Seattle, May 2012

(May 3, 2012) Wendell Cox is an, internationally famous smart growth and light rail researcher and prolific writer, of Demographia in Belleville, Illinois.  Dr. Cox was the keynote speaker for the Washington State Policy Center (WPC) Transportation Lunch, on May 3, 2012 in Bellevue, Washington.

Dr. Cox spent much of his lecture discussing how smart growth destroys housing affordability.  Indeed, Cox has a very high internet presence, and is primarily responsible for many former Democrats, who start questioning their party’s adherence to strict regulations on housing that destroy housing affordability.

To watch Dr. Cox, SCROLL DOWN to Mike Ennis introducing Wendell Cox, at this link – http://www.washingtonpolicy.org/events/details/2012-transportation-lunch

For the association Power Point Presentation, Click This Link –


A notable slide from Cox’s power point presentation is reference to the McKinsey and company report: “Reducing US greenhouse gas emissions: How much at what cost?

This report found that one could still reduce greenhouse gases without reducing home square footage or vehicle miles traveled (i.e. transit oriented developments, smart growth centers, and regional growth centers).  You can view the McKinsey report at this link:


Wendell Cox, quoting from the WPC luncheon:

“Cities are justified only by economics. The purpose of urban areas is to improve the affluence of their residents.”

“Mobility is the key to metropolitan job growth … transit cannot substitute for most trips; and lower income citizens, believe it or not, largely commute by car.”

“The research is very strong: The farther you can get in a metropolitan area to work in a period of time, the better is going to be the economic growth … Seattle has always had some of the worst traffic congestion in the country.”

Wendell Cox – Recently In The Press

Wendell Cox also wrote an article for The Seattle Times:  Wendell Cox’s 5/2/12 Seattle Times column.

Recently, Wendell Cox wrote an article for The Wall Street Journal that demonstrated tremendous feedback:

California Declares War on Suburbia … Planners want to herd millions into densely packed urban corridors. It won’t save the planet but will make traffic even worse …


Colleague Joel Kotkin also was interviewed in the Wall Street Journal, also resulting in tremendous feedback:


Wendell Cox – Web Sites

Wendell Cox maintains at least three web sites on Smart Growth and light rail.  Cox is also a frequent contributor to Joel Kotkin’s “New Geography.”




Wendell Cox “New Geography” articles on smart growth: http://www.newgeography.com/users/wendell-cox

Wendell Cox is also the co-author of the Demographia Housing Affordability Study – http://www.demographia.com/

Craig Stone and Mike Ennis at the Luncheon

Craig Stone, director of WSDOT’s tolling division, also spoke at the luncheon, discussing tolling on SR- 520. WSDOT data shows that travel times across Lake Washington on 520 are increasing.  At the same time, trips across the lake on I-90 have increased, at all times of the day, as people avoid the tolls.

Michael Ennis is the Director of Washington Policy Center’s Center for Transportation.  You can read his blog on transportation, light rail, mass transit, smart growth, and growth management issues at: http://www.washingtonpolicy.org/blog/author/mennis

Eastside Transportation Association (ETA) Appeals East Link I-90 Light Rail Ruling

(May 8, 2012) Just a few days after Wendell Cox’s speech, The Eastside Transportation Association (Jim Horn, Kemper Freeman, and others), who represents individuals who drive automobiles in the State of Washington, appealed the recent ruling allowing light rail on I-90.

From the Eastside Transportation Association:

Former State Senator Jim Horn, Spokesman for the Eastside Transportation Association, (ETA) announced today that they have instructed their attorneys to appeal to the State Supreme Court a recent ruling in March by Kittitas County Superior Court that dismissed ETA’s suit to prohibit the State from transferring the two center lanes of the

I-90 Bridge to Sound Transit.  Sound Transit wants to use the center lanes for light rail use between Seattle and Bellevue to the exclusion of all other vehicular traffic including busses, HOV’s and Mercer Island traffic. 

The suit was filed by ETA on behalf of all Washington State citizens, based on the strict protection of the State’s 18th Amendment, which disallows gas taxes paid for by road users to be used for anything other than the construction and maintenance of roads – which is defined as “highway purposes” in the Amendment.  Previous Supreme Court rulings have upheld this view, and determined that “rail” programs are not a highway purpose.

Horn says the plaintiffs are also concerned that a placement of Sound Transit Rail on the Center Roadway could put the entire 1-90 Bridge at risk of failure.  With rail, the bridge will be operating at 98% weight capacity.  Parts of two floating bridges, the 1-90 Bridge and the Hood Canal Bridge, have sunk in the past. 

Says Horn, “Public safety requires that these concerns be addressed before the commitment to build is made.”

You can read more on Michael Ennis blog, here:


Here is the April 27, 2012 Press Release from the Eastside Transportation Association web site:


East Link Light Rail on I-90 Violates the Washington State Constitution 18th Amendment

I am very glad to hear that Jim Horn, Kemper Freeman, and others with ETA are appealing the March, 2012 ruling. There is no question that using gas tax monies for non-highway purposes such as light rail is illegal under the 18th amendment to the State Constitution.  I campaigned for a YES vote on I-1125 in November, 2011, and have written about this extensively on my web site, including this link:


We need more freeway lanes, since light rail will never take more than 1% to 3% of all vehicle trips.  Construction of light rail will also causes significant economic disruption to businesses in Bellevue.  This was documented by Hebert Research and summarized in this article in The Seattle Times: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2016762939_railstudy14m.html

“Hebert Research reported that shoppers will visit stores less frequently, 100 businesses will move or shut down, 7,239 workers will lose their jobs and business losses will reach $1.4 billion over four years.”

Without More Freeways, More Abandoned Barns Turn Into Espresso Stands

These amusing photos along SR-203 just south of Duvall in the Snoqualmie Valley demonstrates that Seattle needs more freeways.

These abandoned barns are found outside the Urban Growth Boundary on highways such as SR-203, where there’s plenty of room for more freeways to divert traffic away from congested I-405.

Dr. Bill Eager, Chairman of the Eastside Transportation Association, has prepared an extensive loop freeway system in his report “End Gridlock Now.”  Link – https://smartgrowthusa.wordpress.com/dr-bill-eager-seattle-end-gridlock-now/

Abandoned Barn, Espresso Stand, on SR-203 in the Snoqualmie Valley in Duvall ( NE of Seattle), where there should be a four lane relief route, to take traffic off of I-405 through Bellevue.

Another view of the barn.

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