Once again, Professor Sandy Ikeda has written a sharp and insightful piece for The Freeman, this time on the problems of urban planning. He expands on Jane Jacobs’ observations of 50 years ago on how urban planning (that is, efforts by government to control cities) gets in the way of the order that would emerge from many private plans.

Here is Ikeda’s conclusion:

What can government do? In the ordinary course of its activities a government can perhaps at best refrain from doing the things that would thwart the emergence of the invisible social infrastructure that gives rise to that diversity, development, and genuine liveliness.

The rest is mostly taxidermy.