The distinction between residential and commercial establishment has been a staple for a long time, and it has a lot of value...
...for middle- and upper-class neighborhoods, but not for the inner-city neighborhoods that subsidize them. That's right, single-use zoning is a form of reverse welfare that subsidizes the middle- and upper-classes at the expense of the poor.
Also, what's the value in prohibiting someone from building an apartment building next door to a factory? You'd think it would be good to bring jobs to a city without bringing traffic.
In Japan by contrast, they do things a little smarter than the USA's clumsy approach to zoning. Instead of single-use zoning, they allow anything of a lesser nuisance than the area is zoned for. A grocery store is less of a nuisance than a factory, so they allow grocery stores in industrial zones. An apartment building is less of a nuisance than a grocery store, so they allow apartment buildings in commercial zones. And a single-family house is less of a nuisance than an apartment building, so single-family houses are allowed in multifamily residential zones, but not the reverse.
If every neighborhood in a city had to become self-sufficient in city spending versus property tax revenue, you can be sure that people living in middle-class, single-family residential zones suddenly faced with massive property tax bills would do everything in their power to attract bed-and-breakfasts, corner stores, and the other tax-efficient amenities that existed in our neighborhoods until we legislated our freedoms away in the aftermath of WWII.