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Deborah Ford Femat [“Thoughts on Growth
,” Feedback, Dec. 7] is certainly right in stating that increased urban density will require expensive upgrades to infrastructure, such as sewers and water lines.
However, since Austin is projected to continue its rapid growth, we face a choice – density or sprawl. As much as upgrades to accommodate density might cost, the cost of infrastructure to accommodate sprawl is far greater, given more miles of roads, electric lines, sewers, etc.
More importantly, dense housing facilitates mass transit. Dense housing often means multifamily structures. Multifamily structures have less surface area, thus reducing energy loss from heating and air conditioning.
Reduced energy loss and mass transit allow reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. When you factor in the costs resulting from these gases, such as California wildfires and hurricanes like Harvey, and sea level rise, housing density is a real bargain.