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I noticed this article too and started a discussion of it over on Planetizen: http://www.cyburbia.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16719

I must say that I find your attitude toward children disheartening.

The article's basic take on what it takes to have a civillized society with a future is on target. A world without children is a dead world, as dead as the austere lines of Modernist architecture.

There is nothing wrong with escaping from children now and then (as a parent, I can vouch for that!), but when whole districts and cities are child free I think it is self evident that something has gone very wrong with our society and our city.

A good measure of how we're doing as a city and society is whether we are creating physical and economic environments in which child rearing is possible.

It's sad that your primary view of children is as whining crying annoyances... that's the sound of human life struggling to find it's way into the world. If cities and architects don't want to create a place for children and parents in their hearts and designs we're in a sorry state.

Brian Libby

Miles, I must say you make a fair point. It's just that sometimes we adults without children feel a little trampled by families in this society. But I can't really argue with any of what you're saying.


I agree wholeheartedly with the original statement, "What's so terrible about a neighborhood without children?" There are plenty of neighborhoods in Portland geared towards traditional families, kids and all. I do not find it disheartening that there is one neighborhood in the city skewed more in favor of singles and childless couples. Why should we not be allowed to find a neighborhood that fits our lifestyle for a few years? For the first time in my life, I have a family in my neighboring apartment, and I can tell you that singles and couples are much quieter neighbors.

And if you've ever been near Jamison Park on a weekend, you know that Pearl District is a far cry from being "protected" from noisy families.

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