Monday, September 1, 2008

Alcohol laws as zoning laws

From the Hyde Park Urbanist, a story that made me think: residents of an area voting themselves "dry" to prevent a hotel from being built, effectively a form of zoning. Since hotels, restaurants, and music venues live or die based on their alcohol sales, depriving them of permissions to sell alcohol can stop them in their tracks. I know that around where I used to live in the suburbs the alcohol rules were stricter than in the city when it came to restaurants, and there was plenty of intrigue and failure related to the limited amount of liquor licenses. I also have only ever heard of "dry" counties in exurban/rural areas, which makes me think that alcohol policy probably tracks with population density, reinforcing the land use tendency of segregating residential and commercial uses. In any case, the forcing of people to travel farther for their alcohol has proven to be deadly, with drinkers in dry counties having to drive farther to get drunk (and then drive home...).

1 comment:

Sheila said...

Yes, you're so very right! As a recovering alcoholic now for 16 mos+ I can guarantee you, that for those 30 yrs, I was a happy drinker who would have travelled to any lengths to purchase liquor.
Then I was hit severely with Liquors rath, Grand-Mal Seizures, permanently! I personally have no positive solution to this world wide problem. Other than this humble daily activity I do, trying to let many others know of the horrendous uncurable effects that any/all alcohol is more than capable of dealing out!
Hopefully our Governments will take some action, one being to increase the tax's on purchases & two, being forcing all manufacturers to display large health warning labels on each container! Still, that's not going to squelch it all, is it?
But hopefully, it would help our youth's future !?!