Suburbs Increasingly View Their Auto-Centric Sprawl as a Health Hazard

Traffic congestion in Bethesda, Maryland (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Traffic congestion in Bethesda, Maryland (Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Planners in Prince George’s County have talked for years about reshaping communities to help residents fetch a gallon of milk via a walk or bicycle ride, rather than add to stifling traffic congestion by having to drive. But planners say they’re increasingly treating the Maryland county’s low-density, auto-dependent design as more than a traffic problem. More often, they say, they’re considering sprawl a health hazard.

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