As published in The Washington Post on August 29, 2010, Roger K. Lewis describes in his column "Shaping the City" that urban areas have few rental apartments suitable for families. I would argue that many suburbs face the same issue. He thoughtfully describes this issue as a challenge for smart growth.
Unsubsidized apartments built today are almost exclusively designed for and marketed to people without school-age children.
This situation poses a bit of a dilemma for anti-sprawl advocates aspiring to concentrate a significant amount of future metropolitan growth in more urban, environmentally sustainable communities. Through either new development or redevelopment, smart-growth planners seek to create compact, walkable communities with mixed uses, higher densities, access to transit, plenty of jobs and ample housing, especially workforce housing.
Yet in plans for new transit-oriented communities, most of the housing envisioned consists of apartment buildings or attached dwellings in which families with school-age children are unlikely to live.