Spring is in the air. It's a time for new beginnings. It's the time of year that some of us are also looking for a new abode, and whether you're looking to buy or rent, the place you live is a signficant factor of your carbon footprint. Yes, it's the commute, but more than that, it's the daily to and fro of errands, grocery store, and to pick up the dry cleaning. It's the energy and resource usage. And, it's a major lifestyle choice that doesn't come along very often.
What motivates each of us in this decision? Some good reading makes the case that indeed, living in the city is good for our happiness, our wallets (case study here on Boston), and even for the health of our economy.
In "Commuting", Lehrer highlights the point that regardless of these benefits to compact living, the temptations for additional square feet, the extra bedroom, or the bigger yard remain pervasive. Admittedly, even as a proponent of smart growth and urban living, I find these questions echoing in my head as well.
I am hopeful that the changing economy, costs of transportation, modifications to lending practices, and yes, our growing desire to interact with each other, in person, will shift our culture. Cheers to a smaller home, to sharing things like cars, gardens, and tools with neighbors. And using tools like Walkscore, I am indeed searching for the perfect place: where I can spend my time enjoying my neighborhood, its amenities, and civic spaces, rather than decking out the bonus room with all of the latest. And I am not settling for less than a score of 83!