Priorities for Advancing the Concept of New Ruralism
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2016 by the authors. Civic expansion and land use migrations to urban peripheries can accelerate the conversion of agricultural land uses. Widespread trepidation concerning urban sprawl has led to innovative frameworks for conserving or enhancing farmland. New Ruralism is one such framework, linking farmland preservation with developmental plans to reduce farmland conversion and low density development. Although the concept is still evolving, recent support for New Ruralism has grown. One of the most important factors in creating a New Ruralism-based development is coherent policy for permanent agricultural preserves. These preserves require the simultaneous, careful planning of land preservation balanced with the location of future development. This paper discusses the current condition of farmland loss and reviews issues and challenges associated with farmland preservation with existing New Ruralism developments. The goal is to synthesize this information into recommendations for increasing farmland preservation opportunities in New Ruralism-based developments. A more comprehensive definition for New Ruralism is presented, accompanied by several priorities for maximizing the economic, environmental, and cultural viability of New Ruralism-based farmland preserves.