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Urban Shrink Rap: Dealing with Decline

In the wake of the release of the 2010 Census data, how to address shrinking cities, like the stunning Detroit decline, is again a topic for debate. As my colleague Jennifer Bradley points out in a New York Times “Room for Debate” post, unbuilding cities is expensive. She argues that, considering the extent to which the federal government subsidized development, cities should be allocated funds for unbuilding, or at least be allowed to repurpose extent funding for demolition and the like. Another case where one-size-fits-all federal policy fails.