The people designing your city don't care what you want." That's how forbes.com columnist Joel Kotkin sums up the mentality of today's so-called "smart growth" urban planners. Here in the Twin Cities, we have a perfect example of what Kotkin is warning about: "Thrive MSP 2040," the Metropolitan Council's 30-year development framework for our seven-county metro area.
The Metropolitan Council is the regional agency created by the legislature in the 1960s with the sensible purpose of helping to plan and coordinate regional infrastructure. Thanks to decades-long mission creep, that unelected body now seeks to re-engineer society by directing the growth it prefers, rather than confining itself to accommodating growth and the delivery of regional planning and services.
The people of the Twin Cities have the right to govern their own communities. Social planning by unelected regional bureaucrats who use government power to tell us where to live and how to get around undermines democracy and is hostile to our cherished American traditions of freedom and self-government.
The people of the Twin Cities area have many different dreams about the kind of home they want to live in. Local elected officials, too, have well-considered visions of how they want their communities to develop.
“Thrive MSP 2040” is the Dayton Administration’s 30-year plan for development in the Twin Cities’ seven-county region. The plan entrenches a model of regional administration that neuters the power of local elected officials, and centralizes decision-making authority in the unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats of the Met Council.
Housing is not a regional system over which the Metropolitan Council has statutory authority. With this unprecedented, 106-page Housing Policy Plan, you are engaged in major overreach. The plan seeks to promote an ideologically charged social planning agenda that goes far beyond the Council’s statutory powers.