Cheyenne Metropolitan Planning Organization focuses on long-term development goals during Smart Growth America workshop

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Downtown Cheyenne, WY. Photo via Flickr.

Cheyenne, WY is working to grow in ways that support the community’s economy as well as the quality of life for residents, and as part of that work the Cheyenne Metropolitan Planning Organization welcomed experts from Smart Growth America on April 21 and 22, 2015 for a “Planning for Economic and Fiscal Health” technical assistance workshop.

Cheyenne-area residents joined the workshop’s first day for an introductory presentation that featured an overview of the relationship between how a community grows and the health of its economy and local finances.

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Are you looking for your next smart growth deal?

The fourth annual LOCUS National Leadership Summit is your opportunity to shake hands and rub elbows with the best, most influential smart growth real estate developers and investors who are creating great, walkable urban places.

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Councilmember Mike Kasperzak brings a smart growth approach to Mountain View, CA’s boomtown

Google_Campus,_Mountain_View,_CAGoogleplex in the North Bayshore of Mountain View, CA. Photo by Austin McKinley via Wikipedia.

Mountain View, CA, is booming. New companies are brining new residents—and with them worsening traffic congestion and rising home rental prices. Mike Kasperzak, a Councilmember in Mountain View and member of Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council, is using a smart growth approach to help Mountain View solve these problems now and stay vibrant for the long term.

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Macon-Bibb County, GA is making its revitalization vision a reality with help from Smart Growth America

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Downtown Macon, GA. Photo via NewTown Macon.

Macon-Bibb County, GA has big plans and a grand vision for how they want to revitalize their downtown. A workshop with Smart Growth America will help turn those plans into reality.

Smart Growth America traveled to Macon-Bibb on April 15 and 16, 2015 to conduct a workshop on Implementing Smart Growth 101. The workshop will help local leaders translate the plans for downtown revitalization into actionable next steps.

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Green Carts are tackling New York City’s food deserts

Green Carts in New York City, NY. Photo via the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. How difficult is it for you to pick up a tomato for tonight’s dinner or some apples for the week? Unfortunately, for over 23 million people in …

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Since the workshop: Region-wide prosperity is collaborative effort in Graham County, NC

graham-county-ncA new regional vision will help Graham County, NC and its neighbors work together to achieve shared goals.

In April 2013, Smart Growth America traveled to Graham County, NC to hold a “Smart Growth 101″ workshop for county staff. The workshop was designed to provide an introduction to smart growth development strategies, including ideas about how the county could work with other jurisdictions in the region to achieve its long-term goals.

This past January that work took a big step forward with the release of Opt-In SWNC: The Regional Vision. The report was authored by the Southwestern North Carolina Planning and Economic Development Commission, which represents a seven-county region in southwest North Carolina that includes Graham County.

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Bentonville, AR workshop will inform the city’s comprehensive plan update

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Smart Growth America staff lead a technical assistance workshop in Bentonville, AR. Photo courtesy of the City of Bentonville.

Smart Growth America traveled to Bentonville, AR on April 1 and 2, 2015, to hold a workshop for city staff on “Planning for Economic and Fiscal Health.” The workshop, which was part of our 2015 free technical assistance program, was designed to help Bentonville plan for development in ways that support long term prosperity.

Bentonville is just beginning the process of updating the city’s comprehensive plan, which will guide development in the city for years to come. City officials will use what they learned in this month’s workshop to inform their work on the comprehensive plan moving forward. Bentonville was one of just 14 communities nationwide awarded a free workshop as part of this competitive program.

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Join us for a live Twitter chat on the future of equitable, walkable development

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Can real estate developers prevent displacement and gentrification? Are there ways to pay for critical infrastructure without burdening taxpayers? How can the public and private sectors better work together to create equitable, walkable development?

We’re currently putting together the agenda for the 2015 LOCUS National Leadership Summit, and we want to hear from you about the topics you are most interested in.

Join us for a live Twitter chat on Thursday, April 16 from 1–2 PM EDT to discuss what should be on the agenda of the 2015 LOCUS Leadership Summit. Tweet your questions at @LOCUSdevelopers, or join the conversation at hashtag #LOCUSsummit.

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Complete Streets News — April 2015


Photo by Oregon Department of Transportation

Complete Streets benefit communities — In our new report, Safer Streets, Stronger Economies, we examined the economic, safety, and multimodal travel benefits of 37 Complete Streets projects from across the country. We found that most projects improved safety, encouraged more multimodal trips, were cost-effective, and helped to support local economic development. Leaders and transportation professionals involved in projects in North Carolina, Florida, Illinois, and Seattle joined us for a lively discussion of the challenges and successes of a Complete Streets approach on our launch-day webinar. Watch the recording >>

One traffic engineer’s Complete Streets journey  In case you missed it, our follow-up Safer Streets, Stronger Economies interview with North Carolina’s Dean Ledbetter is a compelling read. Ledbetter, a traffic engineer who led the transformation of West Jefferson, NC’s main street, shares his initial skepticism of pedestrian safety improvements and how his thinking shifted over time. Read more >>


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Are you having trouble with the new Fannie Mae appraisal process?

LOCUS is calling on developers across the county to be apart of this discussion to share their experience with the Fannie Mae’s secondary market appraisal guidelines for small multi-family properties. With enough responses, LOCUS will convene a working group charged to develop a list of recommendations to improve Fannie Mae’s appraisal guidelines.

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