Reports on Land Use

The reports below represent a sample of Frontier Group’s work on Land Use. For more of our reports on this and related topics, please visit Full archive coming soon.

Transit-Oriented Development: Strategies to Promote Vibrant Communities

Transit-oriented development—mixed residential and commercial districts that allow residents to walk, drive or ride transit—can improve quality of life in urban areas and encourage more compact development. Transit-Oriented Development: Strategies to Promote Vibrant Communities offers guidelines for successful transit-oriented development projects and identifies a number of locations in Maryland where such development could occur.

(January 2005)
Sprawl in Maryland: A Conversation with the Experts

A growing number of Maryland’s citizens have come to recognize the true costs of the poorly planned, widely-dispersed development that is characteristic of sprawl—sprawl that has required the expenditure of billions of taxpayer dollars for new infrastructure, while degrading air quality, increasing traffic congestion, consuming farmland, and contributing to a declining quality of life for the state’s residents. The MaryPIRG Foundation engaged ten individuals with a long-standing interest in and knowledge of land-use issues in a broad discussion of public policy concerns related to sprawl.

(July 2004)
The Value of Open Spaces: How Preserving North Carolina's Natural Heritage Benefits Our Economy and Quality of Life

In the past, conventional wisdom held that open space purchases, while offering important social benefits, drained local government finances and did not contribute to economic growth. However preserving North Carolina’s natural heritage can strengthen the foundation for economic growth, enhance quality of life, and protect the health of the environment. The Value of Open Space reviews the many ways open space creates value for the community.

(June 2004)
More Roads, More Traffic: The Failure of Road-Building to Alleviate Traffic Congestion in Maryland

Despite spending millions of dollars to build 7,000 lane mile to its road network from 1985 to 2000, Maryland’s congestion problem continues to get worse. A major reason is generated traffic—the new, longer, or diverted trips that develop once highway capacity in an area is increased. Generated traffic reduces or negates the congestion-fighting benefits of highway expansion. Evidence from university studies of congestion patterns, government statistics on transportation and academic research shows that highway expansion is not an effective way to fight congestion. Maryland should shift its transportation strategy away from costly highway expansion projects and toward alternatives that can provide more transportation choices to residents.

(April 2002)
Paving the Way: How Highway Construction Has Contributed to Sprawl in Maryland

Highway construction has been a key factor creating sprawl in Maryland. Data shows that highways intended to serve the needs of existing communities and alleviate traffic have instead allowed migration outward from the cities. They have been a cause of sprawl rather than a solution to congestion. Paving the Way presents an analysis of all developed residential and commercial properties in central Maryland and the Eastern Shore in relation to all major highways, finding that highways act as magnets for development.

(November 2000)