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Stop Sprawl
Sprawl Costs Us All

How Your Taxes Fuel Suburban Sprawl
Report Spring 2000

Suburban sprawl has been rightly blamed for many things: destroying green space, increasing air and water pollution, fracturing our neighborhoods and forcing us to drive gridlocked roads for every chore. But there is one consequence that usually goes unmentioned - sprawl is draining our pocketbooks and raising our taxes.

Sprawl is the result of over five decades of subsidies paid for by the American taxpayer. These range from the obvious to the obscure and include big projects-like the billions we spend on new roads as well as smaller ones-like the tax-breaks that encourage businesses to move to the edge of town.

We've subsidized sprawl at such a basic level for so long, that many people believe the status quo is actually fair and neutral. This is false-what we think of as a level playing field is tilted steeply in favor of sprawling development.

In this report:
Report Introduction
Roads and Highways
Schools
Utilities
Fire, Police, and EMS
Corporate Subsidies
Solutions
Acknowledgements
Endnotes and Bibliography

What is suburban sprawl?

What is smart growth?

Full report in pdf (470k)


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