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Grady Gammage Jr and "The Future of the Suburban City"

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Island Press
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There exists a category of American cities in which the line between suburban and urban is almost impossible to locate. These suburban cities arose in the last half of twentieth-century America, based largely on the success of the single-family home, shopping centers, and the automobile. The low-density, auto-centric development of suburban cities, which are largely in the arid West, presents challenges for urban sustainability as it is traditionally measured. Yet, some of these cities—Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Salt Lake, Dallas, Tucson, San Bernardino, and San Diego—continue to be among the fastest growing places in the United States.

In The Future of the Suburban City, Phoenix native Grady Gammage, Jr. looks at the promise of the suburban city as well as the challenges. He argues that places that grew up based on the automobile and the single-family home need to dramatically change and evolve. But suburban cities have some advantages in an era of climate change, and many suburban cities are already making strides in increasing their resilience. Gammage focuses on the story of Phoenix, which shows the power of collective action — government action — to confront the challenges of geography and respond through public policy. He takes a fresh look at what it means to be sustainable and examines issues facing most suburban cities around water supply, heat, transportation, housing, density, urban form, jobs, economics, and politics.

Grady Gammage, Jr. is a part time academic, a practicing lawyer, an author, a sometime real estate developer and a former elected official.

In his academic role, Mr. Gammage is a Senior Fellow at ASU’s Morrison Institute, the Kyl Center for Water Policy, and a Senior Scholar at the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability.  His work there focuses on urban growth and development, quality of life, and local economic issues.  He also teaches at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law and at the W.P. Carey School of Business.

As a lawyer, he has represented real estate projects ranging from master planned communities to sprawling subdivisions to high rise buildings.

He served on the Central Arizona Project Board of Directors for 12 years, and was President during a period of turbulence when the CAP was suing the Federal Government over the cost of the canal.

As a real estate developer, he built an intense, urban mixed use project in the City of Tempe which won three architectural awards and has been widely acclaimed.

 

Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996. He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.) He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah.” He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.