Category: Leadership Institute

SeaTac, WA looks to make the most of three light rail stations with an “Implementing TOD” workshop

angle-lake
The Angle Lake light rail station under construction in SeaTac, WA. A Smart Growth America workshop looked at the potential for new development around the station. Photo by SounderBruce via Flickr.

In early October, Smart Growth America traveled to SeaTac, WA to help the city figure out how to make the most of three light rail stations with an Implementing transit-oriented development 101 workshop.

The City of SeaTac has already adopted area plans for each of its SeaTac Airport, Tukwila International Boulevard, and soon-to-open Angle Lake light rail stations. “In 2016, with the opening of the Angle Lake Station, the City will have three light rail station areas, each with its own distinct attributes, opportunities and challenges,” said Todd Cutts, SeaTac City Manager. “The expert assistance from Smart Growth America will help guide the transformation of these areas and support the community in shaping them into active, interesting, and healthy places.”

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Bolstering economic development in Spokane, WA’s East Sprague District

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A portion of East Sprague Avenue in Spokane, WA. Photo via the City of Spokane.

On September 15 and 16, Smart Growth America traveled to the City of Spokane, WA for a two-day technical assistance workshop on Planning for Fiscal and Economic Health. The workshop helped inform and focus efforts for sustainable economic growth in the East Sprague Corridor, in coordination with the Sprague Targeted Investment Pilot (Sprague TIP) project.

On the first day of the workshop, Spokane-area residents joined an open public forum on the fundamentals of planning for economic and fiscal health. Roger Millar, former Smart Growth America Vice President for Technical Assistance, and Christopher Zimmerman, Smart Growth America’s Vice President for Economic Development, described the changing economic and demographic dynamics that are driving change throughout the United States, and gave an introductory level discussion of planning for economic health in Spokane.

Posted in Economic and Fiscal Benefits workshop, Leadership Institute, Planning for Economic and Fiscal Health, States, Technical assistance, Washington | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Columbia, MO aims to get parking right

Downtown Columbus, MO Notley Hawkins PhotographyBroadway in downtown Columbia, MO , where parking is sometimes tough to come by. Photo courtesy of Notley Hawkins Photography

Columbia, MO has a state university in the heart of downtown, and its 35,000 students keep the small city bustling. So bustling, in fact, that neighborhood residents and people who drive downtown often find parking at a premium or tough to come by.

Posted in Leadership Institute, Missouri, Parking audit, States, Technical assistance | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Leveraging transit-oriented development for economic growth, better living in Hawaii

[caption id="attachment_23906" align="alignleft" width="640"] An artist’s rendering of a potential transit-oriented development in Waipahu, Hawaii. According to a new report from Smart Growth America and the state’s planning office, such developments could boost economic development and quality of life on the island.[/caption]Hawaii state agencies can leverage transit-oriented development to help deliver on many of Governor Abercrombie’s economic development, quality of life and environmental protection goals, according to a new analysis from the state’s Office of Planning and Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute.

The report’s recommendations come after a series of meetings between state government officials, private sector leaders and non-profit representatives. The group of more than 40 participants, convened by Governor Abercrombie, identified the importance of transit-oriented development to Hawaii.

“The people of Hawaii now have an unprecedented opportunity to leverage transit-oriented development throughout the islands, including but not limited to The Bus and rail transit on Oahu, but also the Hele-On Bus on the Big Island and the Maui Bus and Kauai Bus,” said Governor Abercrombie. “By planning ahead, we can use TOD as a positive tool to proactively direct growth away from agricultural and conservation lands and lay the groundwork necessary to encourage development where it is most needed and welcome for the next generation.”

Posted in Hawaii, Leadership Institute, Technical assistance | 3 Comments

Webinar highlights new guide for state transportation officials

On Friday, Smart Growth America participated in a webinar to highlight our new resource for state transportation officials, released recently in partnership with the State Smart Transportation Initiative.

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Public support spurs progress at complete streets workshop in New Orleans


Holiday Drive in New Orleans is an recent example of complete streets work in action.

In December 2011, the City Council of New Orleans, LA, unanimously passed the city’s first complete streets ordinance. The ordinance, which encourages designers and engineers to build streets that accommodate everyone, has already gained widespread support. Now, it’s up to New Orleans leaders to actually make these changes happen.

Last month, Smart Growth America and complete streets experts Michael Moule and Michael Ronkin held a workshop for City officials in New Orleans to help make their complete streets plans a reality. Joining the officials were representatives from 12 local, regional, and state agencies as well as non-profit partners who also participated in the event.

Posted in Complete Streets: Policy Implementation, Leadership Institute, Louisiana, Technical assistance, Workshops | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Planning for the future in Kimberly, ID

Smart Growth America visited Kimberly, Idaho earlier this week to help the city implement a cool planning program. Channel KMTV from Twin Falls covered the event:

The city of Kimberly is just one of 15 small towns from across the country to receive a special grant that will help make some much needed improvements.

Recently, Kimberly became the recipient of a Smart Growth America Technical Assistance Grant that is completely funded by the E.P.A.

And tonight representatives from Smart Growth America grant were at the rock creek fire station to help provide residents with tools and strategies for managing the future growth in Kimberly.

And its not only future growth, the grant sets out to preserve the character of the small town while enhancing economic competitiveness and quality of life.

“Were looking at all different kinds of things,” said City Administrator Polly Hulsey. “How we can better utilize out downtown area, planning for smart growth as far as our different mixed planning and zoning uses. Pedestrian walking friendly, all sorts of things. And then we will take those into the planning stages and hopefully be able to utilize those for future plans.”

Watch the video: Planning For The Future In Kimberly [KMVT, March 12, 2012]

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Community involvement, local leadership lead Notasulga, Alabama’s comeback

“I’ve been in this town 10 years, and I love this little town,” said Juanita Syljuberget, a resident of Notasulga, Alabama, who works as a contract and grant specialist at nearby Auburn University. “There’s nothing fancy about it, but it’s a quiet little place, and everyone is very nice.”

“But it’s going to dry up and go away unless we do something.”

The plight of Notasulga and its 850-some residents in rural Macon County is not unlike hundreds of other small communities across the country. Years of changing economic and development patterns limited growth opportunities, and the very nature of remote towns left local businesses and municipal services more vulnerable than their counterparts in busy urban centers.

But while the story of a “Small Town USA” grappling with tough financial decisions has been played out countless times nationwide and even in emotional books and films, there is something that sets Notasulga apart: strong local leadership.

Posted in Alabama, Featured Content, Leadership Institute, Technical assistance, Workshops | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment