Upzoning Manhattan

Moneybox
A blog about business and economics.
Dec. 22 2011 10:11 AM

Upzoning Manhattan

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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 11: The lower Manhattan skyline.

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Manhattan is just about the densest place in the United States of America, but should it get even denser? Eldad Gothelf says yes, endorsing Vishaan Chakrabarti's call to "up-zone" midtown and "go further: let’s upzone most of Manhattan as well as the transportation spines throughout the outer boroughs."

I heartily agree. This is not to deny that there may be specific structures worth preserving, but at a minimum if there are vacant lots or teardown candidates anywhere in Manhattan (and yes, these exist) or along subway lines it would be very much in the interests of the city and the country as a whole to build on them as densely as the market will bear. This is much greener than having the suburbs expand further, and besides which we should be allowing as many people as possible to get access to the great cities of the world.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.