Urban Issues

The Economy of Cities, by Jane Jacobs (New York: Random House, 1969). This path breaking work showed how the spontaneous development and growth of cities fit patterns different from those imposed by "urban planners" and statist technocrats.

The Life and Death of Great American Cities, by Jane Jacobs (New York: Random House, 1961). Jacobs's work presented a powerful challenge to "urban renewal" through bulldozers, public housing projects, and imposition of "planning."

Land Use Without Zoning, by Bernard Siegan (Lexington, Mass.: Lexington Books, 1972). Siegan shows the negative effects of zoning and offers free market alternatives to zoning, including contractually restrictive covenants. Contains valuable case studies of communities without zoning, including Houston, Texas.

Rent Control: A Popular Paradox, ed. by M. A. Walker (Vancouver, B.C.: Fraser Institute, 1975). Contains valuable essays by various authors (including three Nobel Laureates), including studies of rent control in Great Britain, Austria, Sweden, Canada, France, and the U.S.

The Excluded Americans: Homelessness and Housing Policies, by William Tucker (Washington, D.C.: Regnery Gateway, 1990). Tucker presents evidence that homelessness is largely the result of rent controls and zoning policies that destroy low-income housing.

"The Formation of Urban Infrastructure Through Non-Governmental Planning: The Private Places of St. Louis," by David T. Beito with Bruce Smith in Journal of Urban History 16 (May 1990): 263-303. This study shows how voluntary action provided and still provides roads, safety, and other public goods.

"Government by Contract," by Donald Boudreaux and Randall Holcombe in Public Finance Quarterly 17 (July 1989). The authors show how voluntary organization through covenant committees, neighborhood associations, and development corporations provide most of the functions we have come to associate with the state.

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