Friday, June 12, 2009

Fear of Density

Narberth is the kind of place I'm often alluding to in my "force you all to live in Manhattan" posts. It's a suburb, but it's walkable and on transit. The main corridor looks very urban, but once you move off that it's a fairly typical, if dense, suburb. Someone wants to demolish an ugly house which doesn't really fit into the neighborhood, and replace it with 4 on a 1.36 acre plot. Google doesn't have a view of the house, though I think it's on this corner behind the trees (update: jac provides view). It's right off the main corridor which is, as I said, quite urban and dense. But for some people, even those who choose to live in such an area, density is always bad.

Neighbors and preservationists, though, object to the plan filed March 27 in Borough Hall. They say the house, built in 1919 for the daughter of an Ardmore industrialist, should be restored.

"We'd love a public park, a less dense use, or restoration of the existing house," said Jim Lobb, head of 30 "concerned neighbors" opposing the plan.

Obviously this project isn't going to make or break the neighborhood either way, but it's a good example of a pervasive attitude: density is bad.

...oops, I had the map wrong. That was actually a spot in Philly. The house is actually a bit farther out in Narberth, somewhere around here I think. It's still very close to the main commercial corridor, though not immediately adjacent to it. The neighbors' objections are a bit more understandable.