Arizona Pushes for Suburban and Rural Development, Despite Dwindling Water Supply
State-level officials in Arizona are getting more serious about water scarcity issues, despite the still-booming growth pressures that exist there. Some listeners may remember from a story we covered in July 2022 that rural areas outside of Phoenix, like the Rio Verde foothills, have found it almost impossible to drill wells and are now facing challenges from having their water delivered by truck.
Now, the state has determined that there is not enough water for already-approved housing projects and will stop some developers from building if they rely too heavily on groundwater, given that it has become a finite resource. Arizona's allocation of Colorado River water is also being decreased due to drought, making alternatives quite limited. Still, the Arizona water agency has given permission to build 80,000 housing lots, and for the most part, construction is going to move forward on these lots.
On today's episode of Upzoned, Chuck and Abby discuss why this development pattern in Arizona—and most of the Southwestern United States—is, as you might have guessed, unsustainable.ADDITIONAL SHOW NOTES
“Arizona Limits Construction Around Phoenix as Its Water Supply Dwindles,” by Christopher Flavelle and Jack Healy, The New York Times (June 2023).
Abby Kinney (Twitter).
Chuck Marohn (Twitter).
Theme Music by Kemet the Phantom.
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