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Old 25-02-2020, 01:38   #331
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Re: Substandard Housing

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Originally Posted by valhalla360 View Post
This is the old...I was here first and did my development but now I don't want you to develop your land because it will impact me...

This is an immense problem in city planning. The worst examples are the Bay Area and London. This is a corrupt arrangement where property values of those who came earlier, are enhanced by denying housing to newcomers by planning restrictions which prevent adequate quantities of new development. This is evil and has impoverished a whole generation of Londoners.



The answer again is DENSITY. There is plenty of land in the Bay Area and plenty of land in greater London, to accomodate all the housing which is needed, with intelligent planning and density of the right type and in the right places. If a community needs more housing, then planning rights need to be released, and development needs to be encouraged. Treating developers as evil -- making it harder for them to do their job -- trying to push off things like affordable housing on them -- all this results in less development, less supply, and less affordable housing, unfortunately benefitting people who bought their houses long ago, so creating corrupt incentives.
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Old 25-02-2020, 01:38   #332
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Re: Substandard Housing

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That's not the fault of developers, that's bad planning. The essence of city planning is to configure and allocate different kinds of space in a community for purposes which enhance the community. Preserving green spaces and wild nature is at the very core of that.



Note that the type of zoning which we had until recently, and still have in some places, makes this worse -- by forcing developers to build low density housing, sprawl is required. The better kind of community has high density around transport hubs and leaves green spaces green, and leaves plenty of wildnerness wild. This is planning.


Sprawl is evil -- it makes bad communities and destroys open spaces and natural areas. Developers don't want sprawl anymore than anyone else does -- it requires them to buy large quantities of land. The answer to it is not only to allow, but to encourage, or even REQUIRE, high density housing, and leave most land in its green and open state.
While the science of urban planning has changed, the concept of evil has not. What’s evil is putting self interest above community interest. And this is the rule for developers, not the exception.

To bash urban planners of the past because the science has advanced, and then promote self-interested developers as if they are saints requires a lot of assumptions that are just plain false. But nice try.

Jamming people in like sardines in urban areas to make a profit isn’t a noble gesture, even if it results in some efficiency. I do appreciate when developers integrate public amenities into their designs, but often they do this under pressure from communities, or to get some kind of zoning concession.

Rationalization of self interest is a pretty common trait of developers. And we do need them. But to claim zoning is evil, and that we should trust developers because they have our best interests at heart is constantly disproven.
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Old 25-02-2020, 01:53   #333
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Re: Substandard Housing

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
While the science of urban planning has changed, the concept of evil has not. What’s evil is putting self interest above community interest. And this is the rule for developers, not the exception.

To bash urban planners of the past because the science has advanced, and then promote self-interested developers as if they are saints requires a lot of assumptions that are just plain false. But nice try.

Jamming people in like sardines in urban areas to make a profit isn’t a noble gesture, even if it results in some efficiency. I do appreciate when developers integrate public amenities into their designs, but often they do this under pressure from communities, or to get some kind of zoning concession.

Rationalization of self interest is a pretty common trait of developers. And we do need them. But to claim zoning is evil, and that we should trust developers because they have our best interests at heart is constantly disproven.

No one asked anyone to trust any particular people. Human beings are human beings capable of whatever. The only thing you can trust is a well-constructed PROCESS with well-designed POLICY.


You can't make policy by demanding that people give up self-interest. Self-interest is natural -- it's human nature. Marx claimed that human nature could be CHANGED -- it didn't work. The engine of economics is ENLIGHTENED self-interest. The desire of developers to earn profits is what drives them to invest and take risks and work for years without income -- and THAT is the what produces buildings and housing and urban spaces. It's up to the planning process to ensure that this self-interest is directed in a way which benefits the whole community. The developer will not be against it -- he will earn more profits by investing in a well-designed community which is more desirable because of this. The better the thing is that he produces, the higher the price will be, and every square foot of any kind of building is valuable beyond the banal sum of bricks and mortar and glass only because of the community around it (location, location, location).



So I stand firmly by my point -- urban sprawl of the mid last century is NOT the result of anybody's self-interest or greed. It is the result of bad planning, planning which not only allowed, but even REQUIRED developers to build that way -- by forbidding high density housing and by forcing developers to consume large amounts of land for every housing unit created.
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Old 25-02-2020, 01:54   #334
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Re: Substandard Housing

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Originally Posted by valhalla360 View Post
San Fransico's housing troubles are largely planning related. UK's council housing shortage has some of the same problems. NYC has issues related to rent control. These are all attempts by planners to solve a perceived problem but in reality punish developers for trying to solve the problem.

Not necessarily "evil" but certainly some misguided planners.
So you don’t actually have any numbers.

Large cities have problems with density.

Modern planning has advanced, preferences have changed, and people are attracted to jobs and social centers.

To call planners evil because priorities or the science or the density has changed over time is to misconstrue the nature of evil.

We need zoning, we need planning, we need open space, and developers are needed but should be watched closely by the public. Because of all the components we’ve mentioned, they’re the most likely to cause your grandmother to get evicted from the home she’s lived in all her life.
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Old 25-02-2020, 02:15   #335
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Re: Substandard Housing

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No one asked anyone to trust any particular people. Human beings are human beings capable of whatever. The only thing you can trust is a well-constructed PROCESS with well-designed POLICY.


You can't make policy by demanding that people give up self-interest. Self-interest is natural -- it's human nature. Marx claimed that human nature could be CHANGED -- it didn't work. The engine of economics is ENLIGHTENED self-interest. The desire of developers to earn profits is what drives them to invest and take risks and work for years without income -- and THAT is the what produces buildings and housing and urban spaces. It's up to the planning process to ensure that this self-interest is directed in a way which benefits the whole community. The developer will not be against it -- he will earn more profits by investing in a well-designed community which is more desirable because of this. The better the thing is that he produces, the higher the price will be, and every square foot of any kind of building is valuable beyond the banal sum of bricks and mortar and glass only because of the community around it (location, location, location).



So I stand firmly by my point -- urban sprawl of the mid last century is NOT the result of anybody's self-interest or greed. It is the result of bad planning, planning which not only allowed, but even REQUIRED developers to build that way -- by forbidding high density housing and by forcing developers to consume large amounts of land for every housing unit created.
We do need process and policy. That’s what zoning is. To claim that planners are wrong and developers are right is an oversimplification. I’m certain many mistakes have been made by both groups. Some good plans have been overcome by changes in density and preferences.

I’m not shedding any tears for developers. They’re part of the problem AND part of the solution.

But let’s be clear. If it were up to developers, the National Mall would be a strip Mall, there would be a McDonalds in the middle of the Grand Canyon, and national parks would have high density condos. The Everglades would have been chopped down and converted to parking lots and trailer parks.

Part of a developer’s “job” is to steal public assets and convert them to private profit. While we can’t blame a guy for trying, just like with our democracy, we need to remain forever vigilant.

Look no further than public beaches and anchorages. If developers and landowners get their way, the public will be pushed to smaller and smaller rights of access on what was formerly considered public access.
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Old 25-02-2020, 02:44   #336
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Re: Substandard Housing

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Funny how even when an individual matches a stereotype some refuse to accept it because we've been taught stereotypes are evil...So are you suggesting we defend all those derelict boat owners right to anchor anywhere because you might be able to find a stray owner who takes good care of their derelict and will happily and promptly pay for the clean up of the sunk vessel?

That sure seems open minded...if not very bright?
I think we are just having a discussion... I am not trying to convince you of anything.
But nope, not saying that. I think you are right... society, to run more smoothly, has to sacrifice the “ rights” of the individual for the benefit of the whole. ( I am not quoting you, just getting the jist I think?)
The one person who lets their dog pee in hotel rooms and bark all day and night spoils it for ALL dog owners — responsible ones or not.
Despite the fact that it may not be “ nice” ... I agree Things are easier if we use “ stereotypes “ to set policy and then the individuals who don’t “ fit” the stereotype that we have constructed can prove us wrong. If they don’t exhibit the characteristics of the stereotype it won’t matter anyway. ( again not quoting you)
Perhaps, though, it’s a balance... generally speaking, we can use stereotypes to direct policy and planning— but in our individual lives when meeting and dealing with people, we reserve judgement on them until we get to know them.
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Old 25-02-2020, 03:17   #337
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Re: Substandard Housing

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
We do need process and policy. That’s what zoning is. To claim that planners are wrong and developers are right is an oversimplification.

In the case of urban sprawl, developers were neither right nor wrong. They can only work with what they have, within the planning requirements. Planners require a MINIMUM of x amount of land per housing unit -- that's the way codes were written during most of the last century, then that is the direct cause of sprawl. Developers have nothing to do with it.


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. . . But let’s be clear. If it were up to developers, the National Mall would be a strip Mall, there would be a McDonalds in the middle of the Grand Canyon, and national parks would have high density condos. The Everglades would have been chopped down and converted to parking lots and trailer parks.

Again, that's not up to developers. What you do with the National Mall is purely a planning question. Naturally if you change the planning designation of the National Mall to Commercial/Retail, and put the land up for sale, a shopping mall will get built there. That is not a decision made by developers; it's made by the municipality.


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Part of a developer’s “job” is to steal public assets and convert them to private profit. While we can’t blame a guy for trying, just like with our democracy, we need to remain forever vigilant.

No one "steals" public assets. Public assets are sold or given away. It's up to the municipality to refrain from selling them, or sell them carefully -- one of the core functions of municipalities is safeguarding public assets. You can't blame developers for buying what is sold and making profits with it, or taking what is given away. This is 100% the job of the municipality to regulate and has nothing at all to do with developers.


Incidentally, in many parts of the world, planning rights are considered to be public assets and are not part of property rights in land. This is an enlightened approach. So if you own farm land and want to build a shopping mall on it, and if the planners make a decision that a shopping mall in that location would be good for the community, then as part of the change of land use designation process, you as the land owner have to pay the municipality for the difference in land value between farm land and commercial development land, or part or most of the difference.



I'm going through this right now with one of my projects, except that in my case it involves 2.5 hectares of land with an old factory on it, in the center of one Nordic capital city. The planners will allow me to tear down part of the old factory, change the use designation from industrial to retail, hotel and commercial, and build two towers on it, and indeed strongly encourage me to do so. But just because I own the land doesn't mean that I own the rights to build all those extra square meters -- I have to pay the municipality for that in a separate deal. It's treated like a joint venture where I build the buildings, the municipality provides the infrastructure and the planning rights, the community has a strong say in what it all looks like, through a series of public hearings and consultations, and the profits are shared. It's a very complex, involved process, but it produces superior outcomes for all involved, including the developer and his investors.
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Old 25-02-2020, 07:57   #338
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Re: Substandard Housing

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In the case of urban sprawl, developers were neither right nor wrong. They can only work with what they have, within the planning requirements. Planners require a MINIMUM of x amount of land per housing unit -- that's the way codes were written during most of the last century, then that is the direct cause of sprawl. Developers have nothing to do with it.

Again, that's not up to developers. What you do with the National Mall is purely a planning question. Naturally if you change the planning designation of the National Mall to Commercial/Retail, and put the land up for sale, a shopping mall will get built there. That is not a decision made by developers; it's made by the municipality.

No one "steals" public assets. Public assets are sold or given away. It's up to the municipality to refrain from selling them, or sell them carefully -- one of the core functions of municipalities is safeguarding public assets. You can't blame developers for buying what is sold and making profits with it, or taking what is given away. This is 100% the job of the municipality to regulate and has nothing at all to do with developers.

Incidentally, in many parts of the world, planning rights are considered to be public assets and are not part of property rights in land. This is an enlightened approach. So if you own farm land and want to build a shopping mall on it, and if the planners make a decision that a shopping mall in that location would be good for the community, then as part of the change of land use designation process, you as the land owner have to pay the municipality for the difference in land value between farm land and commercial development land, or part or most of the difference.

I'm going through this right now with one of my projects, except that in my case it involves 2.5 hectares of land with an old factory on it, in the center of one Nordic capital city. The planners will allow me to tear down part of the old factory, change the use designation from industrial to retail, hotel and commercial, and build two towers on it, and indeed strongly encourage me to do so. But just because I own the land doesn't mean that I own the rights to build all those extra square meters -- I have to pay the municipality for that in a separate deal. It's treated like a joint venture where I build the buildings, the municipality provides the infrastructure and the planning rights, the community has a strong say in what it all looks like, through a series of public hearings and consultations, and the profits are shared. It's a very complex, involved process, but it produces superior outcomes for all involved, including the developer and his investors.
You're creating strawman arguments to argue with. Nobody here but you is bringing up urban sprawl. Go ahead and argue that all you want. You're dancing with yourself. Who is to blame for that between planners and developers? Trick question: they both are.

Second, you're arguing that when developers exploit a municipality that it's not "stealing" because the public should have been paying attention. If a developer takes something of value from the public, it might be legal but it can still be characterized as evil. Yours is the argument of a Bernie Madoff: "Sure, I ripped those suckers off, but they should have been paying attention!" Who is evil in that situation? The public, for not watching the developer closely enough? If a developer bribes the planning commission, which one is evil? Trick question - they BOTH are!

Do you want us to sympathize with developers? Please break out an orchestra of the worlds tiniest violins. They are well compensated for all that suffering through the rules that have been developed over time to protect the public.

I don't for a minute think all developers are evil. I'm sure there are some ethical ones. You seem to have a nice grip on it. But for every ethical developer you can show me, I can show you ten who are just good at rationalization. They can not only sell us, but they can sell themselves. Because if there is one thing a developer is good at, it's sales.
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Old 25-02-2020, 08:04   #339
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Re: Substandard Housing

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I don't do much living aboard without sailing, but if I did for some reason, my boat is certainly not "substandard housing". I don't know about anyone else's boat. My boat is a quite comfortable, cosy, nice place to live, well-ventilated, well-heated, fully insulated so condensation-free, spacious, with all conveniences (except a dishwasher), and always has a sea view. My queen-sized bunk is the best bed (for some reason) I've ever had -- maybe the slight rocking motion -- best sleep I ever get anywhere. I can look out at the sea while lying in the bunk, through hull ports, or up at the sky through the hatch. If the boat had a dishwasher, I might even say it's a perfect place to live.


I have land homes in different countries and spend more than half of my time in them -- I like cities and I like city life. But I'm always happy to be living on the boat. One of the great joys of owning a cruising sailboat is, besides the sailing, getting to live in all kinds of different places, and move whenever you want to. Not only a sea view, but can be a different sea view every week or every day if you like. What could be better?
We are very similar, though I'm only 3 months on the boat. The longest my anchor has ever been down in one spot is 3 days. But it would be interesting to try to stay in one location for longer sometime, even if at a dock.

I also sleep better (best) on my boat, even though one eye is half open and an ear is always turned on. At my northwoods cabin our bedroom is huge with a vaulted ceiling and I sleep the worst there. IMO, it's a cocoon situation where the cabin on the boat is very contained.

As for the thread discussion, it's pretty funny. Makes me wonder if weed is responsible for the rambling or what. Someones gotta be high here.
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Old 25-02-2020, 08:13   #340
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Re: Substandard Housing

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As for the thread discussion, it's pretty funny. Makes me wonder if weed is responsible for the rambling or what. Someones gotta be high here.

Yes. Developers are high if they think the public is going to believe that city planners are evil, and that developers are white knights.
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Old 25-02-2020, 08:28   #341
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Re: Substandard Housing

Interesting drift here. My experience, as someone who has watch the whole urban planning/developer regime closely as a city reporter, is that there are few white knights, and even fewer sinister demons. What they are is a bunch of people trying to do the best they can based on their own beliefs, and the constituents they are answerable to.

It's absolutely true that the urban planning oversight process can be captured by developers in an given area. Given that developers tend to have the largest risks and rewards in the game, and also the deepest pockets, it's no surprised they are focused on achieving outcomes that they want. But I've also seen it swing the other way, so to speak, where motivated community members capture the process, often with a strong tinge of NIMBYism driving the action.

No good, no evil. Just people trying to maximize their own benefits, while being true to their own beliefs.
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Old 25-02-2020, 08:42   #342
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Re: Substandard Housing

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The term “ trailer trash” is an example of this. Some trailer parks are neat and tidy... delightful garden gnomes everywhere( )
And pink flamingos.
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Old 25-02-2020, 10:22   #343
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Re: Substandard Housing

Any housing without high speed internet is substandard.
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Old 25-02-2020, 10:27   #344
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Re: Substandard Housing

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And pink flamingos.
You know I think I saw one of those here on one of the boat scum scum's boat among the trash.
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Old 25-02-2020, 11:29   #345
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Re: Substandard Housing

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And pink flamingos.

You shouldn't be dissing the culture of the indigenous peoples.
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