Smart Growth Encourages Land Banking and Destroys Housing Affordability

Re: Huge Land Bank Puts Squeeze on
The Age (Melbourne)

Land banking is a normal market reaction to a regulatory regime in which
land for new housing is severely rationed. Like any business, developers
must ensure that they have sufficient inventory to operate. With arbitrary
planning policies that ration land, it would be easy for a developer to be
driven out of business because competitors have cornered the market (for
land). Yes, it is outrageous that a block of land for a house costs
$180,000, but do not blame the land bankers, blame the government policies
that have unnecessarily made housing unaffordable for the average

In Atlanta and Dallas-Fort Worth, the high-income world's fastest growing
metropolitan areas, finished (serviced) land for new housing is at least 75%
lower than in Melbourne. This is because these metropolitan areas have not
implemented the destructive urban consolidation (smart growth) policies that
have been imposed in all of Australia's largest cities.

The result, of course, is that residents of Dallas-Fort Worth and Atlanta
spend far less on housing and have more discretionary income to spend on
other goods and services.



How Cars Are Killing Us Around the World



Of course, traffic deaths are regrettable and great progress has been made in their reduction. Traffic deaths in the United States today are about the same as in the late 1950s, despite the fact that driving has increased to 5x the rate at that time.

Virtually everyone who uses a car recognizes the risks. The connection between the superior personal mobility provided by cars and the eradication of poverty could not be more clear. That is why car ownership expands as fast as people can afford cars, whether in the United States, Europe, China or the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

A more revealing and relevant graphic would show traffic deaths compared to gross domestic product.