Monday, November 19, 2007

Housing Crisis, Meet Water Shortage

Have you noticed that the predicted housing shortage seems to be en route for a head-on collision with the predicted water shortage? The Southern Nevada Water District has been sending out ominous warnings that the taps will run dry in 2010, right about the same time that the Southern Nevada Home Builders, among others, are predicting a housing shortage.

Since everyone else is breaking out the crystal ball, let me make my own predictions. Possible scenarios:

#1: No water, no houses; we all leave the Valley and Las Vegas becomes the world’s biggest and newest ghost town. Probability: low, but not impossible. Ever heard of New Orleans? Mother Nature can, and still does, wipe cities off the map occasionally.

#2: Our city’s leaders confab and come up with a solution that makes affordable and sufficient housing available, as well as ensures an adequate supply of water through conservation and smart growth. Probability: lower than Britney Spears missing a week as a front-page tabloid story.

#3: All the major decision makers ignore the warnings to prepare for either the housing shortage and/or the water crisis until both impact the casino industry. Once the casinos become concerned, the entire city develops a burning interest in both issues. Probability: higher than the odds on a fixed boxing match.
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