History and Benefits of a Planned Community
Foster City is a planned community. Planned cities are wholly conceived from the outset, with an organized development plan (as opposed to haphazard development in segments throught time). Expanded use of planned communities was an outgrowth of post World War II Great Britain, when urban destruction resulting from bombing during the war left Britains facing the daunting challenge of rebuilding their cities. At that time, the choice was made to rebuild according to a plan, rather than as the cities had been originally developed and built.
The success of the "new city" concept resulted in its gaining popularity in the United States. Two of the original planned communities were in Reston, Virginia, and Columbia, Maryland. In California, Foster City was soon followed by Irvine. By 1973 there were over 50 planned cities in the United States and others around the world.
Planned communities typically develop around a pre-determined threshold population level. This threshold serves as the basis for determineing the number of homes, shops and industries to be built on the land and allows coordinated development of these elements. The planned nature of population growth allows neighborhoods to develop intact and purposefully avoids the commercial thoroughfares that commonly divide neighborhoods in other cities. Industrial and commercial development is kept away from the neighborhoods, resulting in a quality of life that is difficult to achieve in unplanned communities.
A planned city is often more aesthetically pleasing as well, following an architectural plan that results in orderly development, neighborhoods that age better over time and property that continues to command high value. The open market is controlled somewhat by the architectural perspective.