Get outta town Yards battle a ‘not in my backyard’ mindset

Dec 01, 2010 | 08:28 AM |

After decades, or in some instances a century, of operating at one location in a city or town, scrapyards are being told to pack up and move. Land that nobody wanted long ago now has become prime real estate.

Month after month we hear about scrapyards being told to move. Cities want the yards' land to build an office high-rise. Or scrap piles detract from a condo developer's plans for ritzy apartment-style living; he won't be able to sell two-bedroom units for $1-million-plus if they overlook scrap (although people look at scrap sculptures every day in dozens of cities and towns). Or maybe it's the city itself—instead of scrapyards and auto junkyards, city planners want "green space" in the form of tree-lined walking trails and bicycle paths. Others are looking to turn the sites into shopping centers or high-priced industrial parks.

This is not a new trend, but it seems like we are hearing more and more about new redevelopment projects in cities and towns. Who is to blame? Baltimore, I think. Charm City, as it is nicknamed, installed an aquarium along its waterfront years ago and it helped to revitalize the neighborhood. Now that's the blueprint for every troubled city.....

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