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Growth Management or Social Engineering?The Albuquerque Experiment Arthur C. Nelson, Ph.D., FAICP Professor & Director Urban Affairs & Planning Virginia Tech – Alexandria Center National Impact Fee Roundtable – Denver 2005
What is “Social Engineering” • The use of policy to • Change behavior • Change social outcomes • “Engineering” tools • Taxes and fees (economists’ preference) • Regulations (politicians’) • Combined (planners’ preference)
We are Already Socially Engineered Federal & State • Public education, standards • Public health (inoculations) • Public safety (driving rules, building codes) • Retirement planning (IRAs) • Home Ownership (tax deductions) • Investment (capital gains preferences)
We Are Already Socially Engineered Local • Euclidian zoning (segregating land uses) • Exclusionary zoning (keep low-income out) • Large-lot & large-house zoning • Inefficient pricing • Average cost utilities, subsidized roads, etc. = Urban Sprawl (development patterns that create more costs than benefits)
Effects of Social Engineeringin Land-Use Planning • Over-consumption of land • Rising costs per unit of new development • Inefficient land-use interactions causing more traffic • Social segregation, skewed benefits • Higher quality of life in some areas, lower QoL in others Less than optimal aggregate QoL
Purposes of Growth Management • Protect public goods • Minimize taxpayer exposure • Maximize positive land-use interactions and minimize negative ones • Distribute growth benefits & burdens equitably • Elevate the current quality of life
Planning and “Re-Engineering” • Provide public goods (buy/regulate) • Reconfigure land-use planning to reduce facility costs (regulation), reduce taxpayer exposure (efficient pricing) • Reconfigure land-use to maximize positive land-use interactions (regulation) • Workforce housing; provision of facilities equitably (subsidies, regulation) • Outcome should be aggregate QoL improvement
The Albuquerque Experiment • Planned Growth Strategies (PGS) • Based on Growth Management Goals • Encourage development in areas with existing services “Fully-Served” tier = $0 marginal cost • “Partially-Served” tier Charge “full” marginal cost • “Unserved” tier Development agreements
The Role of Impact Fees • New Mexico Allows Public Safety Water, wastewater, stormwater Parks and recreation, open space, trails Roads • New Mexico Does Not Allow Schools, libraries, community centers • PGS-based Impact Fees For All eligible fees except water & wastewater
PGS-Impact Fee Team • Chris Nelson, Virginia Tech, team leader • Steve Tindale, Tindale Oliver Associates Roads • James C. Nicholas, University of Florida Public Safety, Parks, O.S., Trails • Kees Korsmit, Integrated Utilities Group Stormwater drainage • Julian C. Juergensmeyer, Georgia State U. Law
PGS-Based Impact Fees • Public Safety “east” & “west” service areas: $207 to $276 per 1k sf du • Trails & Open Space: $390 per 1k sf du • Parks and Recreation 7 service areas: $0 to $1,630 per 1k sf du • Drainage 5 services areas: $0 to $0.32 per impervious square foot • Roads 7 service areas: $0 to $2,918 per home in largest-home tier Steve Tindale to Review
Even More “Engineering” • $0 for Affordable Housing (HUD) • $0 in Metropolitan Redevelopment Areas • 30% to 70% reduction for job-based development west of Rio Grande (jobs-housing balance) • New study to derive across-the-board reductions based on land-use integration