Smart Growth News- May 1, 2012

National

A low-cost way to improve public transit: Add joy
Grist- April 30, 2012
When it comes to transit, even the best of us have a bad attitude. In my own case, I ride the commuter train because it’s the lesser of evils: Driving to work sucks, and the train sucks a bit less. Among those with stronger environmental devotions, transit can be an obligation: We ride the bus or train because it’s the right thing to do, not because we enjoy it.

Inside Job
Next American City- April 30, 2012
How the Obama Administration Is Reshaping Urban Policy

Rising tide in Norfolk, Va.
PBS- April 27, 2012
When the presidential candidates talk about the long-term economic security of the US, they often talk about the national debt, the viability of Medicare and Social Security, and the rise of China.

The Secret Energy Drain on Cities: Streetlights
The Atlantic Cities- April 30, 2012
Streetlights, often tens of thousands of them spread throughout the entire footprint of a city, represent an impressively large drain on city budgets. They are often cities’ biggest or second biggest energy demand, and can amount to somewhere between one-quarter and one-half of a city’s entire energy bill, sometimes even more.

CEQA Reform Bringing Smart Growth to Life
PublicCEO.com- April 30, 2012
California’s transformative law for planning and development, usually called SB 375, comes to life this month in the Sacramento region, the very place that helped inspire its elaborate integrality five years ago. What is new to Sacramento and the rest of the state, however, is the law’s component of CEQA reform that finally compels all the necessary actors to actualize a model that ties together climate impacts, regulatory streamlining, and such traditional planning priorities as transit and housing.

Local

No love for the heart of the city
Star Tribune- April 28, 2012
Minneapolis and St. Paul are failing to grow, despite their thriving suburbs, while competitor towns like Seattle and Denver are booming along with their metro areas. Why?

Mayor Bloomberg’s Sustainability State of Mind
Huffington Post- April 30, 2012
Looking at the nation’s crumbling infrastructure, growing deficit and inadequate investment in science and education, it is difficult to believe our national leaders ever focus on the future. While I don’t see much concern for the future in Washington, I do see it here in New York City. It is easy to see in the city’s ambitious capital budget and in Mayor Bloomberg’s path-breaking PlaNYC 2030 sustainability strategy.

Like Montclair, Essex Adopts ‘Complete Streets’ Policy
Montclair Patch- April 30, 2012
Essex County has become the first county in New Jersey to adopt a “Complete Streets” resolution as part of its broader transportation and road safety policy.

Killer tornadoes: 2 resilient cities 1 year later
USA Today- April 30, 2012
Here is what you do after a massive tornado slashes the heart of your city, killing scores of citizens, wiping away landmarks of a lifetime.

Jersey City Development, Begun in ’86, Enters Final Phase
The New York Times- May 1, 2012
In 1981, the developer Richard S. LeFrak got a call from his father, who was exploring a broad swath of land in Jersey City. “You’d better come over and look at this,” Samuel J. LeFrak told his son.

Students use UV lamps to clean air on Houston bus
The Transit Wire- April 30, 2012
Five Rice University seniors have installed a device on a Houston (TX) METRO bus that destroys 99.8% of the pathogens that circulate through the air-filtering system. Called FluProof, the $500 device uses high-powered ultraviolet lamps to sterilize the air.

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