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Published: Friday, August 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Snohomish


Urban housing trends don't fit

Housing style, size and location trends are always in flux. Development should therefore be planned to fulfill long term, proven future demand.
Very large houses from the first half of the 20th century built for large families became unpopular as did large families. In the 1960s '70s and '80s, when small families were recognized as socially responsible, small homes were in demand. In the 1990s, when large families became vogue again, combined with new dot-com wealth, the demand for large homes returned. Moderate size single-family homes have remained in demand for centuries.
It is important to maintain long-term desirable housing to avoid blighting the community's future with vacant and derelict buildings and degraded neighborhoods.
Snohomish is not in danger of becoming a ghost town because we have no micro-apartments or ultra-high density neighborhoods. We live in oasis of quiet neighborhoods and single family homes. There will surely be enough people who desire to live in Old Snohomish to keep our town alive and vital for a long time into the future.
As time passes, our value as a destination town and a living community can only increase as we become more unique. Especially in light of the predictions that tiny, single-occupant residences are the wave of the immediate future.
To follow extremes in civic planning is shortsighted. It is a policy that can lead to the degradation of a community.
Trends are simply fashion. Like roundabouts and apodments they are not appropriate in all towns and should be approached with great caution.
It is the responsibility of city government to above all avoid unintended consequences and do no harm. Snohomish, are you listening?

Colleen Dunlap
Snohomish
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Herald Editorial Board

Jon Bauer, Opinion Editor: jbauer@heraldnet.com

Carol MacPherson, Editorial Writer: cmacpherson@heraldnet.com

Neal Pattison, Executive Editor: npattison@heraldnet.com

Josh O'Connor, Publisher: joconnor@heraldnet.com

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