Most of the following articles are by Debra Stein. Her firm, GCA Strategies, provides some of the best advice on how to deal with contentious land development projects. We include this material here because uncompromising Not-In-My-Back-Yard opposition to public interest projects such as low income housing and well-designed multiple housing is one of the reasons local government is reticent to work in partnership with neighbourhood groups. Ideally, public-spirited citizens will take up the challenge of confronting neighbours who begin to drift toward NIMBY opposition.
This material is also of tactical value to citizens opposed to obviously bad projects: big-box retail, toxic industry, destructive roads, sprall-making subdivisions, highrises parked on valuable waterfront.
Can't decide whether your concern about a particular land use project is NIMBYism or wholesome community involvement? Find out what a person thinks who lives somewhere else. Without hearing your views first, what does a friend or work associate think of the project? What does an expert think of the project? Architects and planners with no interest in the project are good for building evaluations. For an expert on environmental or social impacts contact a local community college.
The Troublemaker's Teaparty is an updated and expanded print version of The Citizen's Handbook. It contains all of The Handbook plus additional material on preventing grassroots rot, strategic action, direct action and media advocacy. You can get a copy of The Teaparty from bookstores, Amazon or New Society Publishers.