"In the 1960's, a Presidential Task Force on Urban Problems was convened to address the pressures of explosive U.S. suburban growth and development. Four scenarios for the future were postulated: "(1) The suburban ideal... may be perpetuated in fresh new suburbs built farther and farther from city centers, while the older suburbs become entirely integrated into the social life (even if not the political boundaries) of the central city. (2) The suburban ideal may perish as the urban population doubles during the coming thirty years and present suburbanites are overrun by threefold and even fourfold population increases, so that the average suburb becomes just as overcrowded, crime-ridden, polluted, and unpalatable as the central cities are now, and their life indistinguishable from that of the overcrowded centers. (3) The suburbs may stabilize, or even empty out, as central cities are renovated and redeveloped and become more attractive to families who work in the city and would prefer to live there if the quality of life were tolerable. (4) The present suburbs may stabilize as the result of a growth of new towns, autonomous small cities that are neither metropolitan centers or suburbs, a growth speedy enough to absorb all the increase in urban population." (Haar, The End of Innocence (1968:4) With the benefit of hindsight, we will evaluate which of the above alternatives best characterizes the present state of U.S. suburbs. We will show that despite the optimism expressed by researchers and commentators alike, alternatives to post-World War II growth and development patterns -- the back to the city and new town movements have not proved lasting. Furthermore, the American suburban ideal -a private family life and selective public life sited in cultivated benign nature -- has not perished. Rather, the ideal continues to guide suburban growth and development. The majority of the U.S. public sustains preferences for living in peripheral communities; and today, more Americans live and work in suburbs than in central cities. Existing suburban communities have not become indistinguishable from the central city. Although they continue to "urbanize," they still bear characteristics that support the suburban ideal. Specifically, when contrasted with central cities, suburban communities display greater political independence; more marked racial and economic segregation; more rigid functional zoning; lower densities; a higher percent of single family home ownership; and more natural landscape elements. And new peripheral growth in exurbia continues similar patterns guided by similar Ideals. To conclude, we will examine the newest settlement prototype proposed to stem the pressures of suburban growth -- the neotraditional village. We will argue that it is not only unlikely to live up to its promises, but it is a model masked in the guise of urbanity while inherently supporting central values of the suburban ideal."