McMansion today, tenement tomorrow?

A piece in the latest issue of the Atlantic Monthly looks at a disturbing trend. With foreclosures on the rise and a glut of new homes, suburban decay is upon us. Once-promising new developments are now full of vacancies, squatters, and gangs.

The Atlantic reports that, for the past 60 years, "Americans have pushed steadily into the suburbs, transforming the landscape and (until recently) leaving cities behind. But today the pendulum is swinging back toward urban living, and there are many reasons to believe this swing will continue. As it does, many low-density suburbs and McMansion subdivisions, including some that are lovely and affluent today, may become what inner cities became in the 1960s and '70s -- slums characterized by poverty, crime, and decay."