Republicans and Democrats focus on issue of urban sprawl

The issue of urban sprawl is getting serious attention from Vice President Al Gore and Republican candidates in the early days of the 2000 presidential campaign. One reason why the issue is receiving such attention is the fact that about 50 percent of the nation's population now lives in the suburbs. The suburbs have traditionally tended to be Republican enclaves, while urban areas tended to be Democratic. This trend may be changing, however, as events like the shootings in Colorado make the suburbs face issues like violence and gun- control, once thought to be concerns mainly for cities. Meanwhile, Vice President Gore has unveiled a "livability agenda" that is aimed specifically at the suburbs. Included in the $10 billion initiative are opportunities for localities to preserve open spaces, increase mass transit availability and clean up old industrial sites.

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