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Blue line, greenbelts, and the effects of growth management: The geographical effects of growth management policies in Boulder, Colorado

  • Year: 2011
  • Author: Talucci, Anna C.
  • Journal Name: ProQuest Dissertations and Theses
  • Publisher: University of Denver
  • Published Location: United States -- Colorado
  • ISBN: 9781124958927
  • Country: United States
  • State/Region: Colorado

This study evaluates and describes the effects of growth management policies, established by the city of Boulder, Colorado, for the city and the surrounding region. A variety of techniques contribute to this evaluation, including remote sensing analysis of land-use change for the region, mapping of commuter flow patterns, and analysis of the distribution of housing values, housing units, number of jobs, and income values. Growth management policies focus on planning for development to ensure continuous, adjacent growth, while preventing haphazard, leapfrog development. In cases such as Boulder, when planning is implemented unilaterally by a city as opposed to on a regional level, growth tends to be funneled to new locations, thereby perpetuating sprawl and all its negative implications. Boulder has had a long history of employing a variety of policies to manage growth, including a service area boundary as well as a tax to preserve open space that results in a greenbelt that defines the extent of the city. The result has been the formation of a sharp edge between the urban and rural landscape, with increased commuters from the surrounding area, a mismatch between jobs and housing, and a worker earning/housing cost mismatch for Boulder. This has funneled growth to the surrounding area, as documented by steady increases in the built environment.

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