Tag: Chris Leinberger

Local leaders confront revitalization challenges

Policy Forum plenary panelistsChris Leinberger, President of LOCUS, Peg Meortl, PNC Bank’s Senior Vice President for Community Development Banking, Don Edwards, CEO of Justice and Sustainability Associates, and Mayor Mick Cornett of Oklahoma City, OK discuss revitalization during the Local Leaders Policy Forum opening plenary.

Most American communities are actively seeking the benefits of local revitalization. But, how is revitalization measured and how can communities achieve the most lasting outcomes? This was the central question in the opening plenary session at Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Policy Forum held in Washington, D.C. on June 16th, 2014.

Job creation, attracting new businesses and supporting local entrepreneurs are undoubtedly critical goals of revitalization. However, communities are also concerned about making progress in other critical areas like health, social equity and sustainability. Leaders and experts offered diverse perspectives on the diverse roles of revitalization and innovative approaches that can maximize results that strengthen communities.

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Join LOCUS next week for an event on the future of walkable urban development

LOCUS President Christopher Leinberger speaking at a previous ULI event.
LOCUS President Christopher Leinberger speaking at last year’s event.

Real estate professionals, advocates and academics are invited to join LOCUS, the George Washington University Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis and ULI Washington for a day-long event exploring how to develop walkable urban projects and how to implement the strategies for place management in walkable urban places.

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New report reveals historic shift in real estate demand in Atlanta, GA

Atlanta's Five Points neighborhood
Atlanta’s Little Five Points Neighborhood. Photo via Flickr.

Walkable urban development is now the primary real estate market in one of the nation’s most unlikely regions: metropolitan Atlanta, GA.

That’s according to The WalkUP Wake-Up Call: Atlanta, a new report released today and authored by Christopher Leinberger, President of Smart Growth America’s LOCUS coalition of real estate developers and investors.

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Reigniting America’s real estate and housing markets through reform

This op-ed originally appeared in The Hill.

Today, the real estate industry finds itself caught between a rock and a hard place. On one hand, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) are leading the charge for tax and housing reform. On the other, we in real estate are wary of policy changes and the potential impacts on the recovering real estate market. But there may be a way forward. In January 2013, Smart Growth America (the parent organization of LOCUS: Responsible Real Estate Developers and Investors) released a study that surveyed 50 federal programs and found that between tax breaks, grants, loan guarantees and other programs the federal government spends or commits approximately $450 billion each year directly to the real estate market. The study found that much of that spending is uncoordinated and out of step with today’s market realities and demographic shifts.

As leaders in the real estate development community, we understand the positive impact federal involvement can have on the real estate market, and support a continued federal role in the sector. However, we also recognize the economy and real estate market have structurally changed, and policies and programs that spurred prosperity in previous generations can actually impede it today. We must ensure that every dollar invested in real estate is going to help the economic recovery – and that is why, we, LOCUS, a national coalition of real estate developers and investors in partnership with Smart Growth America developed a series of recommendations in a recent report, Federal Involvement in Real Estate: A Call for Action, proposing common sense reforms to existing programs.

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Announcing Executive Education Course on Walkable Urban Places

For more than 50 years, the dominant development model in the United States has been the familiar ‘driveable suburban’ approach. Today however, a structural shift is underway in the real estate market as demand increases for walkable urban development – and the DC region is leading the way.

Now, LOCUS, in collaboration with the George Washington University School of Business and ULI Washington, is proud to announce a five-day executive education course this summer aimed at providing real estate professionals the tools they need to take advantage of this of this market transformation. The course, which will be held from June 10th to 14th in Washington DC, features an impressive line up of developers, elected officials, place managers and others at the forefront of transforming Washington D.C. into the nation’s leading market for walkable urban development.

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DC area’s neighborhoods are becoming more walkable – even in the suburbs


Chris Leinberger at CNU DC’s Live.Work.Walk event.

Urban dwellers and apartment hunters everywhere are familiar with the term “walk up,” frequently used to describe an apartment building lacking an elevator. But at a recent event hosted by the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) in Washington, D.C., attendees learned about a different type of WalkUP – the “walkable urban place.”

Chris Leinberger, President of Smart Growth America’s LOCUS, was a keynote presenter at Live.Work.Walk. D.C.’s Future Growth, presented by the Washington, D.C. chapter of CNU on March 11. In his presentation, which opened the full-day educational event, Leinberger gave an overview of “The WalkUP Wake Up Call,” a report which emphasizes the economic potential of walkable, urban places in greater Washington, D.C. and how the region can serve as a model for the country for future real estate development.

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Diverse development helps neighborhoods in greater DC and beyond


Washington, DC’s Yards Park in the Capital Riverfront neighborhood. Photo via Flickr.

Office renters, apartment seekers and shoppers are all vital parts of creating a great, economically resilient neighborhood. What development strategies attract these people? As Christopher B. Leinberger’s new research explains, walkable streets and transit choices are increasingly important in Washington DC and across the country.

Leinberger, President of LOCUS and Research Professor at The George Washington University School of Business, sat down with the Washington Post recently to discuss his most recent research, “The WalkUP Wake-Up Call,” and the future of development in the Washington DC region.

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Ballot measure offers Atlanta an alternative to gridlock


Traffic jam in Atlanta. Photo by Flickr user Matt Lemmon.

Though it won’t come as news to residents – or anyone who has visited the region – metro Atlanta has some of the worst traffic congestion in the country. The worst, in fact, according to a 2006 ranking by Forbes. Metro Atlanta residents spend an average of 43 hours per year stuck in traffic, costing individuals an estimated $924 per year in lost productivity and wasted fuel. Moreover, years of auto-oriented suburban growth and lack of investment in the regions’ MARTA transit system means that commuters looking for an alternative to the gridlock are largely out of luck. The region’s rail system currently serves only a small percentage of metro Atlanta’s 4.1 million residents.

That could soon change, however. In what is being billed as a watershed moment for metro Atlanta, voters in the 10-county Atlanta region will go to the polls on Tuesday, July 31, to vote on a referendum to raise an estimated $7.2 billion for transportation projects aimed at relieving Atlanta’s congestion and building out its transit network. The Transportation Special Local Option Sales Tax (TSPLOST) would raise the region’s sales tax by 1 cent for ten years. 85% of the funds raised would be spent on a list of regional transportation projects developed by a “regional roundtable” of elected officials. Approximately 52% would go to transit projects, including an expansion of the MARTA heavy rail system and the Beltline Light Rail. The remaining 15% would go to each county for local projects.

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Economic growth through transit-oriented development in Kansas City

As Kansas City prepares for a special election on a proposed downtown streetcar line, KCPT and the Mid-America Regional Council‘s Imagine KC series examines the impact of transit-oriented development on Kansas City’s metro. KCPT’s Randy Mason and LOCUS President Chris Leinberger toured some of Kansas City’s streetscape along the proposed line, and discussed the commerce and development streetcar proponents predict will follow.

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Chris Leinberger on the Option of Urbanism at the Kansas City Public Library

On April 18, 2012, Chris Leinberger, President of LOCUS, visited Kansas City, MO to discuss walkable neighborhoods as part of the Kansas City Public Libraries series on What Makes a Great City.

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