If you could start over, what would you do differently?

Via National Geographic News, “Hurricanes vs. Homes: Should Building on U.S. Coasts Be Stopped?“:

“In the wake of last year’s unprecedented hurricane damage, questions are being raised about whether rebuilding should be allowed on the U.S.’s hurricane-vulnerable coastlines.”

While, obviously, it’s a tragedy that devastation happens for any reason, there is an opportunity to go back and save habitat and important environmental buffer zones. This will help protect the region from future vulnerability. At the same, time there’s a serious danger of genrification if the only people able to rebuild are those with comparative wealth. If devastation becomes a way for “creative destruction” in the real estate market to consolodate more land into the hands of a few, the result would be quite wrong, in my opinion.

Discussions of re-envisioning regional use reminds me of works like Ecotopia and Nine Nations of North America.

There’s also a way of thinking that I found to be true in the technical industry which is to always ask, “If we weren’t already doing things the way we are, how would we start doing them now?” Not only is this an opportunity to take a razor to obtuse process, but it’s also an opportunity to allow a feedback loop to develop and inform current design and activity.