Page:Old Towns and New Needs.djvu/59

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37
THE TOWN EXTENSION PLAN

country highways leading into the town, matters would have been ten times worse; as it is, except where such highways have saved the situation, it is usually impossible to get a direct route within our towns from anywhere to anywhere. No provision whatever has been made for expansion; roads that must obviously at an early date need to be widened to accommodate growing traffic, have been allowed to be lined on each side with property built close up to the road. Railways have been allowed to hem in the town without any effort having been made to forecast its development and provide for the necessary bridges and other requirements for expansion, thus throttling the town and its traffic in many directions. Cottage property has been allowed to spring up along the margins of railways and canals. Factories and workshops have been dotted about wherever a bit of land could be obtained for the purpose, often dumped down to the ruin of some good residential district, and always so scattered as to involve much needless carting to and fro of the materials of industry, adding greatly to the cost of production, to the congestion of traffic, and to the expense of street-making, widening, and maintenance, thus directly crippling the efficiency of the industry, and by destroying the amenities of the homes of those engaged upon the industry, indirectly crippling this efficiency still further. Not only is the industrial life of the community hampered; but the cost of administration is increased; and the development of the town is restricted. This leads to the congestion of buildings upon the ground, to the creation of slums, the destruction alike of the health,