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Date October, 2001
Client Metropolitan Philadelphia Policy Center
Length 112 pages

policy report

Flight or Fight

Metropolitan Philadelphia and its Future

Flight or Fight: Metropolitan Philadelphia and its Future presents the complex policy problems facing the slow-growing Philadelphia metropolitan region. The report brings together comprehensive regional data with real life experiences of residents and lays out an agenda for change with the message that trends of urban decay, suburban sprawl, and slow economic growth can be addressed and reversed.

Flight or Fight asserts that it is time for Metropolitan Philadelphia, a region that produces almost 40% of Pennsylvania’s economy, to bring to Harrisburg a region-wide comprehensive policy agenda that clearly states what we need to succeed. To do this we need a transformative vision based upon the following four principles:

CONCENTRATE future development and infrastructure improvements in and around older areas and in newer suburban centers of growth;

CONSERVE much of our remaining agricultural and rural lands;

BUILD upon the region’s rich history, culture, and abundant natural resource amenities; and

REDUCE equalize local tax burdens and conserve fiscal resources; and, regional growth through the right transportation, housing, and work force development policies.

Recognition for this publication included an award from the American Society of Landscape Architects for its thoughtful analysis, good design, and responsible solutions. The jury found that “the book has successfully fostered for the first time an understanding of the interrelatedness of the economic and population losses in the city to suburban sprawl.” In addition the report won the Governmental Research Association’s “Most Effective Education” award and the PepperPot Award for Issues Management from the Philadelphia Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.