38th Congress of the European Regional Science Association: "Europe Quo Vadis? - Regional Questions at the Turn of the Century", 28 August - 1 September 1998, Vienna, Austria
A resurgence in interest in problems of urban and suburban conglomerates has occurred, revisiting growth management issues of the 1970s. Per capita developed land and vehicle usage increases in spite of sustainability approaches in planning. Today?s concerns still focus on the incapacity of infrastructure systems and ambient environment and land resources, to support growth. Issues of the equitable distribution of infrastructure systems and their impacts have complicated these issues still further. Managing new and existing infrastructure facilities and services as a common system aligns development with its spatial context. Various theoretical approaches address this problem ranging from sustainability concepts to life-cycle engineering. This paper first identifies the disjointedness between existing and new infrastructure systems and the resulting discontinuities between developed and adjacent developing areas. Second, an evaluation of relationships between existing and new systems is undertaken for key infrastructure services for water supply, water resources management and wastewater treatment. This evaluation is based on original research on public service management and planning within major US metropolitan areas and some European cities. The evaluation treats a central set of decisions or events applicable to existing and developing facilities as a single system. Finally, the paper addresses how abundant technological innovation can link developed and developing areas so they can become mutually supportive, avoiding spatial and capacity constraints.