Giving up the Suburbs and the Footprint, Too

by Tim Fulton on October 11, 2008

Image: jdnx

Today, I read a very interesting article in the Globe and Mail about a family who gave up life in their 3,600 sq ft suburban home for life in a much smaller home in Toronto. The story talks all about how the family got sick of taking care of their pool and lawn and consuming much more resources than anyone really should. In response, they packed up and moved closer to the city, where walking and public transit can get them anywhere they need to go, including to work.

This article really speaks to me. As a current college student who lives in the suburbs in New Jersey when I’m not taking classes, it’s so obvious how different my life is from one style to another. Here, at college, I live in a dorm apartment with three of my friends, and really only use my bedroom, the kitchen/living room, and the bathroom. Even sharing most of the space, I feel like I have more than enough to let my junk spread out in an unorganized fashion.

Similarly, it’s been great living in an apartment and not needing to take care of the lawn. If I want to get out and toss a frisbee around or play a soccer game, there’s always the park or the lawn in front of our building, but I don’t have to go out and mow it myself every weekend. It may seem really insignificant, but trying going a few weeks without mowing the lawn or pulling weeds or generally needing to worry about what your grounds look like and you’ll see how much free time and energy you have.

What I’m trying to say is this: even though big houses in the suburbs can give you the feeling of material wealth, there are benefits of a different to small houses in the city or in a town. So, if that place in the ‘burbs has been weighing on you recently, perhaps it’s time to try something new.

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{ 1 comment }

1 igo (andrew) October 12, 2008 at 10:28 pm

I know exactly how you feel. I grew up in the suburbs and recently moved to the city. It is nice being so close to everything and not having to worry about mowing the lawn. One downside is not being able to have much of a garden.

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