The NCTCOG wishes to expand their land-use planning into the equivalent of another five counties according to the Star-Telegram on 07Jan08:

“The Metroplex is adding about 1 million residents every seven years, according to the North Central Texas Council of Governments. The region’s population has surpassed that of greater Philadelphia, Detroit and Boston. . . .

“The growth has prompted the council of governments to start thinking seriously about expanding its reach. The agency, the congressionally recognized official planning body for the region, will hold hearings this month on a proposal to extend the metropolitan planning area into all of Wise, Hood and Hunt counties and into previously untouched portions of Johnson, Parker and other counties.

“Regional planners want to influence land-use decisions in those rural areas so suburban growth doesn’t go unchecked, which could lead to even worse traffic and fouler air than we have today. “We’ve got to have the whole region in this land-use relationship, or we’re going to have leapfrog development,” said Michael Morris, the council’s transportation director.”

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Look at the experience of San Jose, CA and Portland, OR to see the type of mess this central planning can bring to pass. The reason the West coast has a housing shortage, excessive housing prices (and subsequent housing melt-down) is due to the greenie ideology of constraining people to small areas of land instead of letting them spread out.

Cato study documenting this situation, “When Government Plans, It Usually Fails

“Some of the worst plans today are so-called growth management plans prepared by states and metropolitan areas. They try to control who gets to develop their land and exactly what those developments should look like, including their population densities and mixtures of residential, retail, commercial and other uses. About a dozen states require or encourage urban areas to write such plans. Those states have some of the nation’s least-affordable housing, while most states and regions that haven’t written such plans mostly have very affordable housing. The reason is simple: Planning limits the supply of new housing, which drives up the price of all housing.

In states with growth management laws, median housing prices in 2006 were typically four to eight times median family incomes. In most states without such laws, median home prices are only two to three times median family incomes. Few people realize that the recent housing bubble, which affected mainly regions with growth management planning, was caused by planners trying to socially engineer cities. Yet it has done little to protect open space, reduce driving or do any of the other things promised. “

Why was Texas spared the worst of the housing bubble repercussions? Because we did not have the Soviet-style central planning of California.

What does NCTCOG want to do? Institute central planning over a wider area in North Texas so the ‘master minds’ can tell us where and how to live, i.e., piled on top of each other.

By the way, NCTCOG is looking for Transportation Planners. If you have cultivated the omniscience needed to plan the daily movements of seven million people this could be your chance.

Portion of the job description reads as follows:

“Sustainable Development – Support land-use initiatives related to the regional transportation system. Develop alternative demographic forecasts and conduct planning activities to support infill and transit-oriented development projects and regional bicycle/pedestrian initiatives.”

“Infill”=pack us tighter

“Transit-oriented”=repeat the mistakes of Portland, Oregon by placing high density housing near non-car transportation

Attend the NCTCOG hearings on their expansion proposal and tell them what happens when centralized land-use planning fueled by a greenie ideology becomes the dominant criteria for where we live.

  • 10 a.m. Jan. 22, Duncanville Community Center, 201 James Collins Blvd.
  • 6:30 p.m. Jan. 22, Fort Worth Southwest Regional Library, 4001 Library Lane.
  • 6:30 p.m. Jan. 23, Denton North Branch Library, 3020 N. Locust St