Nimbyism vs. Mimbyism
(Nimbyism) Not In My Back Yard is term that has grown over the past 50 years. It is typically used to describe someone or a group who lives in a place and has decided that future activity and development in that place would be detrimental to the area i.e. more developments, new schools or increased commercial activities. In a nation built on capitalism this is a difficult concept to truly digest since America is fundamentally built on the idea that we must continue to move forward and improve. This main premise behind these Nimby groups is that new developments and growth creates more traffic. With a suburban/sprawl design where cars are typically the primary or only means of getting around there is no getting around a negative impact (more traffic) from more development. I do not disagree with this idea…what I am frustrated with is that idea that some think that there is only one way to grow.
In urban redevelopment I believe the new term should be called (Mimbyism) or More in My Back Yard. For those of us who live in Urban Areas, especially the downtown districts, the more the merrier. We know that more people bring the opportunity for more restaurants, boutique retail and more people that bring greater security and possible friends. Mimby’s support more sustainable and positive economic development. They care about their neighborhood and believe the fact there is not only safety in numbers but also economic development and quality of life. In urban areas, more people doesn’t necessarily mean more car traffic either. Urban form produces a model that as more people populate the area more forms of transpiration become viable and lead to alternative means of getting from A to B. It’s proven that public transportation is more efficient and the more people that use it, the fewer people will be driving their cars. Please join a Mimby group near you to support positive and sustainable development in your urban areas!