The following appeared in the May 3, 2015 edition of Newsday on page A33. The original can be read here.
The relationship between land use and income growth is strong, especially as our region continues to replace our former industrial legacy with age-restricted residential units and multifamily complexes.
It seems that every new mixed-use proposal, even those on the regional scale, seeks to create yet more retail and hospitality usage, which helps to contribute to slower wage growth highlighted by the editorial. Residents and policymakers should allow increased residential density to be built only if a proposal will actively attract commercial or industrial employers that generate higher wages. Examples include tech firms or green industry, sectors that will help fortify Long Island’s economy against downturns and stagnation.
By taking a comprehensive regional approach to land use, we can lessen the gap between the ever-increasing cost of living and our region’s anemic wage growth.
Rich Murdocco, Syosset
Editor’s note: The writer blogs about land use at TheFoggiestIdea.org.