Land use and climate change in Miami-Dade County
Author(s)Peckett, Haley Rose
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
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Miami-Dade County, Florida, was one of the earliest jurisdictions to adopt a climate change plan in 1993. Land use features prominently in this plan as a means to reduce greenhouse gases through development patterns that allow people to lower their Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). Travel data show that average per capita VMT for the Miami area increased approximately 24% between 1993 and 2005, signifying that the land-use policies are not meeting their goal of VMT reduction. One apparent explanation is that land-use policies are not adequately implemented and enforced. The Board of County Commissioners is the most powerful decision-making body and holds responsibility for land-use policy enforcement. The Board is constrained by a governmental structure in which each commissioner is accountable only to residents of his or her district. Commissioners make decisions based on immediate benefits for their districts with little incentive to consider the long-term issues of land use and climate change. The Urban Development Boundary illustrates how the competing agendas of economic development and affordable housing compel commissioners to approve developments that contradict existing land-use policies. The financial crisis of the Miami-Dade Transit system was exacerbated by district-based conflicts and limited commissioner accountability. The district-based structure evolved from a history of racial and ethnic under-representation, which complicates the introduction of structural change.(cont.) Instead, the County should introduce incentives that encourage commissioners to include long-term County needs in policy enforcement decisions. Recommendations include: * Strengthened land-use advisory board * Transparent calculation of the long-term impacts of proposed developments * Temporary moratorium on 2011 UDB applications * Strategic funding allocation to promote smart growth land use.
Thesis (M.C.P.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, 2009.Includes bibliographical references (p. 69-77).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.