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A Challenge to Copenhagen's Model of Development

A battle over a city park highlights a flaw in the city’s much-praised approach to balancing its books.
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Juan Angel de Corral/Getty

After a long fight, Copenhagen's environmentalists are breathing a sigh of relief.

For the past few years, a sweeping, wildlife-rich grassland called Amager Faelled, just south of the city center, had been under threat of potentially damaging (if limited) development. Even exploring the suitability for buildings last month caused upset, when tests to the proposed construction site caused the deaths of some rare animals. Then, abruptly on Wednesday, Copenhagen’s Lord Mayor Frank Jensen announced his about-face on a project he had personally endorsed. The city promised to look elsewhere for construction.