Not wanting to be outdone by the Scientologists, Domino's Pizza founder Tom Monaghan is developing a Catholics-only enclave in Florida to accompany a new Catholic university. The town will look no different from the average ex-urban development: dendritic street system, cul-de-sacs, artificial lakes (in Hurricane-prone Florida?), and a town center partly inspired by New Urbanism (with a major dose of Salt Lake Temple Square; i.e., though a public space, your civil liberties will be curtailed).
There will be, of course, some major departures from the norm. Says Tom Monaghan:
We're going to control all the commercial real estate, so there's not going to be any pornography sold. We're controlling the cable system. The pharmacies are not going to be able to sell condoms or dispense contraceptives.
It's surveillance in the service of religious orthodoxy and as expressed in landscape form, a hybridization of Rome and Ground Zero that I'm quite giddy to see take shape. But even if Tom Monaghan's agenda does not come to fruition, as there are several legal issues that need to be addressed, there is that first implementation of the Rural Lands Stewardship Program to pique interest.
“An incentive-based system, Rural Stewardship allows a landowner to obtain credits for protecting lands proven to support natural resources and agriculture, then to utilize those credits in areas identified as suitable for development. Importantly, the number of credits earned is commensurate with the environmental significance of the land, so property owners are more highly rewarded for protecting more valuable lands.”
Ave Maria, Florida
Rural Lands Stewardship Program