The YIMBY movement was started by, and remains closely associated with, people who are a lot like me.
What are we like? Well, like many of us, I have an affective preference for walkable urbanism. I graduated from college and moved to Washington, D.C. in 2003, a very particular moment in the history of urban America. For 20 years after the end of World War II, affordable automobiles plus heavy federal investment in highway building induced population loss in traditional city centers that had been built around a geometry of trains and walking. Then, rather than leveling off, this process was exacerbated by a large increase in crime that persisted for a long time. As a result, raising children in a walkable urban neighborhood in the ‘80s and ‘90s was an eccentric choice but not necessarily a super expensive one. The neighborhood I grew up in wasn’t cheap, but it wasn’t astronomical either. Lots of people with very normal jobs lived there — most people didn’t particularly want that kind …
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