NIMBYism. What is it? The People’s Paper has the answer.
“NIMBY” is an acronym for “not in my backyard.” This concept manifests itself when residents of a neighborhood or area are opposed to development prospects in their own neighborhoods despite supporting similar efforts elsewhere.
This concept also manifests itself when the demographics occupying an area shift. Occupants of residential areas have typically adopted this mindset to preserve the state of their communities, mostly to dilute rates of crime, traffic, vagrancy, and various other problems.
This phenomenon popped up in the metroplex recently due to prospects of a new amusement park being brought into the Frisco area. The Frisco City Council recently approved the development of a new Universal Studios theme park in the area on March 7, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.
Council Members Brian Livingston and Laura Rummel dissented on the decision to approve the park’s construction.
Livingston agreed with previous community concerns regarding noise and traffic near their neighborhoods, particularly Cobb Hill.
“I think it’s a great project, but I just don’t think it’s going to be the right location,” Livingston said during the meeting.
One resident of Cobb Hill told WFAA that it seemed as though voices in the community were not heard and that the only focus was on monetary gains.
While Universal did agree to concessions to mitigate some of this backlash, concerns still remained.
Council Member Bill Woodward also acknowledged these concerns as well, noting that “in three years, nobody is going to recognize what we see today.”
NIMBYism has also been observed in housing developments.
Stephen and Ayesha Curry joined with residents of the Atherton community in California to oppose the development of townhomes near the neighborhood. The couple issued a letter on January 18 to the town, citing safety and privacy concerns.
“We hesitate to add to the ‘not in our backyard’ (literally) rhetoric, but we wanted to send a note before today’s meeting,” said the couple in the letter, according to The Almanac. “Safety and privacy for us and our kids continues to be our top priority and one of the biggest reasons we chose Atherton as home,” they continued.
Some politicians have pushed back against NIMBYism.
California Governor Gavin Newsom issued a statement after a California appeals court stopped housing construction for 1,100 students at Berkeley’s People’s Park.
“California cannot afford to be held hostage by NIMBYs who weaponize CEQA (state law) to block student and affordable housing,” said Newsom in the statement. “This selfish mindset is driving up housing prices, and making our state less affordable,” he continued.