Compact Growth and Smart City Development: The Unsustainability of Urban Sprawl
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As cities become more populated, are municipal governments struggling to manage the influx of demand in the realm of power usage and city resources regarding critical infrastructure and energy management? Contemporary research centers on a prevailing view of the benefits of the compact growth smart city model over the outdated urban sprawl model regarding energy and environmental sustainability. In this study, data was collected and analyzed to provide meaningful insights for city planners and government leaders to weigh the costs and benefits of adopting the compact growth model of urban development in lieu of the urban sprawl model of expansion. Through collecting municipal data of high population cities in America, regressions were run to examine how density has an effect upon various factors supporting a city’s operational efficiency. The results of this study indicate that the urban sprawl model, popularized during the 20th century, is less sustainable than the compact growth model of smart city development, especially with increasing populations. Furthermore, future urban development plans can employ the compact growth model of smart city development to maximize infrastructure and improve energy efficiency. This paper will delve into the contention that urban areas will need to adopt the compact growth model for sustainable operations.