I'm starting to run into resistance from a couple of developers and the local home builders association for architecture, landscaping, site planning and general design requirements in the development code I'm writing. Among the other reasons why they might object (cost, mainly), I've also heard "Well, you're just [name of community], and it's hard for us to justify higher end design, architectural detailing, more landscaping and so on there." I interpret it as "the residents doesn't deserve or care about good design, because they're not wealthy or even upper-middle class."
When I worked in Northeast Ohio, I was asked to look at the site plan for a strip plaza for an exurban community that didn't have design regulations. The plan was atrocious; a basic cinder block and precast concrete building with the back unfinished end turned towards the street, exposed rooftop mechanical equipment, no utility screening, flexispace with no wall or facade articulaton or changes in the roofline, and so on. The developer defended the design by saying "We have four grades of finish for the projects we build, from A to D. The D grade is what we build for the most affluent towns. The demographic studies we've done show that here, we can't justify more than an A grade project, and the expense of four-sided design, landscaping, brick or decorative CMU, or any other enhancements." The town planning commission actually agreed with the developer!
This is really more of a discussion thread than anything else, since I have a good response for the argument "you don't deserve good design because you're not wealthy." Have you ever encountered this from a developer in your community? What was the response?