The Madeleine Brand Show is a daily, two-hour program that looks at news and culture through the lens of Southern California.
Hosted by Madeleine Brand
Airs

Re-imagining the American neighborhood




A cul-de-sac ends among pads for new home construction left dormant under a stormy sky after new-home sales tumbled.
A cul-de-sac ends among pads for new home construction left dormant under a stormy sky after new-home sales tumbled.
David McNew/Getty Images

Listen to story

05:09
Download this story 2MB

Declining housing prices continue to be a major drag on the economy. New figures show prices dropping in most major cities, after a bit of an upturn in the spring and summer. Four years after the housing bust, nearly one in every five homeowners owes more than their house is worth. And foreclosures are increasing. More than a quarter million Americans lost their homes between July and September, according to the Federal Reserve.

All this has devastated the construction industry. But it's providing an opportunity for urban planners and developers. Some are beginning to re-imagine what American housing might look like when things begin to recover. In Phoenix, a group of graduate students from Arizona State University are looking at a suburban staple, the cul-de-sac, and thinking about how it could be re-engineered to fit both an altered economy and a changing demographic. Devin Browne from KJZZ in Phoenix reports for the Fronteras Desk.