Environment: An Old City's New Town

One of the best ways to save decaying cities is to build a "new town" right in the city's center. Trouble is, such enormous developments are so expensive in land, relocation and construction costs that most cities have to ask Washington for help—and then wait in line perhaps for years to get the necessary federal funds.

Last week Philadelphia showed the way to a short cut. Five major local companies announced plans to build a 50-acre, $400 million "Franklin Town" virtually in the shadow of city hall with hardly any governmental aid. The secret...

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