Mobility and Sprawl
I found this chapter interesting and related it to myself growing up. I grew up in a small town in northern MN. I guess at the time I didn't realize how much more civic people actually were. Everyone new everyone else. People attended city council regularly and when local elections came around everyone new the canidates. As, for shopping that Putnam talks about is interesting as well. Linving in a small town meant that we would have travel an hour to go to the mall. I remember that my family would make a saturday out of it and go shopping about once a month or every two weeks. I Also remember having family friends as well car pooling and coordinating so that we all could go together with minimal cars. To fast forward a bit, I have lived in MPLS for about 5 or 6 years now. I have noticed the change that Putnam talks about here as well. I drive all the time going shopping in Bloomington or Roseville while living in MPLS. I don't know my nieghbors here or even considered attending any neighborhood meetings much less where to even go for something like that. The last paragraph on page 211 of his book is a good example of what I am talking about.
Basically all of Putnam's arguements on mobility and sprawl are hard to argue against. I believe I am one of those stats that he talks about in which growing up in a small town yielded higher civic participation and city people having less. One question I have about this chapter, is this transformation inevitable? Is there or was there a way to stop this trend of suburbanization? I think Putnam brings up good points but he really doesn't give any solutions. He also relies heavily on the automobile for an excuse. I think the suburb issue is bigger than just the car taking up time. You have to take in the account that times are changing where we are moving at a faster rate where time is money and our genertion is looking out for Mr. Number 1 which is ourselves. Technology and convience I think is a larger culprit then the car or homogeneity of suburbs. My final question then is what is going to be the next trend? We have moved from the country to the city and from the city to the suburb. Is there any more room for mobility and sprawl?