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Urban Decay and Why can’t people feed themselves Essay

Urban Decay is a phenomena that is directly associated with large cities. Recent economic developments, local and national transportation policies, as well as population’s tendency to move toward the suburbs foster Urban Decay. The results of Urban Decay in United States are visible in most cities through abandoned commercial and residential buildings in the inner cities. According to LSA Associates (2007), “Urban decay is a compounding phenomenon that can result from extended vacancy, deferred maintenance, and abandonment of commercial buildings.

” The Bay Area Economic Forum describes the process of urban decay as follows: “Vacant buildings, along with their large parking lots, can attract litter, graffiti, and vandalism, as well as loiterers and homeless populations. A decaying building both worsens its own prospects for refurbishment and weakens the vitality of the buildings around it. ” Based on the readings and research for this project, I have built the opinion that enterprise zones are most appropriate in combating Urban Decay.

Ferrara (1982) states The basic concept behind Enterprise Zones is to create an open, free market environment in the nation’s depressed inner cities and rural towns through the removal of taxes regulations, and other government burdens on economic activity. The creation of this environment and the removal of these burdens would then create and extend economic opportunity within the zone area leading to the economic revitalization of these areas and to real private sector jobs for workers in or near these areas.

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The creation of similar zones has been executed in many cities through the nation. One of the examples is inner city San Antonio, TX. This area was in urban decay. Many of its inhabitants left for the suburban areas and many businesses moved in that direction as well. The city of San Antonio then decided to revitalize the inner city by creating an enterprise zone around the Alamo and the river walk. This worked extremely well, made San Antonio downtown one of the most beautiful, and visit worthy parts of the city.

Consequently, good paying jobs and many other benefits of such success are passed on to the residents of that area. Why are some nations so wealthy and dominant in the world while others are so poor and weak? The main reason why some nations are wealthy and others poor is capital. According to the website investorwords. com, (2009) capital is “cash or goods used to generate income either by investing in a business or a different income property. ” The availability to capital allows individuals and companies to invest money into the economy and thus generate more capital.

Along the way, taxes are paid that allow the government to invest into infrastructure and services that are eventually used by the private sector increase capital generation even more. Harford (2007) states that … there is no smooth progression from where they are to where they would be when rich. For instance, to move from drilling oil to making silicon chips might require simultaneous investments in education, transport infrastructure, electricity, and many other things. The gap may be too far for private enterprise to bridge without some sort of coordinating effort from government—a “big push.

” The difference between the poor countries and the rich countries is in the quality of execution of the above process. In many instances, governments fail to realize that they are there to serve for the greater good, rather then for their own and the balance is disturbed. In other instances, governments allow the private sector too much control and the balance is disturbed again at the expense of the majority of the population. Countries are very complex in terms of geography, culture, and availability of resources (material and intellectual).

Whether a country is going to be rich or poor depends on its characterization, use, and most importantly development of the above listed resources. In order to effectively do that, a great level of cooperation between the government and private sectors is necessary.


Bay Area Economic Forum, 2004. Supercenters and the Transformation of the Bay Area Grocery Industry: Issues, Trends, and Impact, page 70, January. Ferrera, J. Peter (1982) The Rationale for Enterprise Zones. Article retrieved on 08/05/2009 from http://www. cato.

org/pubs/journal/cj2n2/cj2n2-3. pdf Harford, Tim (2007) How physics can explain why some countries are rich and other poor. Article retrieved on 08/05/2009 from http://www. slate. com/id/2171898/ Investorwords. com (2009) Capital Definition 1. Article retrieved on 08/05/2009 from http://www. investorwords. com/694/capital. html LSA Associates, Inc. (2007) Urban Decay. Article retrieved on 08/05/2009 from http://www. greengatewaygroup. org/resources/Seeno%20docs%20from%20City%20website/Final%20EIR/18UrbanDecay_%7B3BDCC141-9368-493A-91DC-50D22B577DF6%7D. PDF

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