I get the reverse sentiment, (ie, "Then leave the burbs alone.") and I can understand it. At the same time, it can never happen. Good, bad, or otherwise, Memphis is the reason those burbs exist. Decisions by the burbs affect Memphis (as do decisions by Memphis affect the burbs), and when it comes to the economy, health care, higher education, transportation, etc. Memphis simply matters more. Not a judgment and not unique. Urban planners that help accelerate the "hollowing out" of urban areas are now realizing their errors. The cities are the drivers of most social, cultural, and economic engines in a region. Detroit is in dire straits because it let its burbs override city interests. The let themselves be hollowed out. They were left with a local infrastructure far larger than a city its size now needed. Memphis must proactively look out for itself. Whether suburban residents believe it or not, a thriving Memphis will do more for their quality of life than the decisions made by smaller local governments.
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