Tag: Illinois

Elizabeth Tyler on infill development and downtown improvements in Urbana, IL

Urbana, ILUrbana, IL’s Community Development Department runs the city’s farmer’s market (above), in addition to several other programs. Photo by Jeff E. via Flickr.

Urbana, IL has a lot to build on. The city of 41,000 is home to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the school’s students and faculty make the most of Urbana’s great transit system, thriving downtown, small businesses and art scene. Urbana is working to improve all these features, and Community Development Director Elizabeth Tyler is helping to make it happen.

Tyler is a member of Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council, a bipartisan group of municipal officials who share a passion for building great towns, cities, and communities. Since 2001 Tyler has served as Urbana’s Community Development Director and oversees planning and economic development initiatives in the city that range from providing assistance to new and existing business to managing the city’s public arts program and farmers’ market.

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Village of Park Forest, IL hosts workshop on sustainable land use

Local residents and officials in Park Forest, IL met with representatives from Smart Growth America on April 18 and 19, 2013 as part of a free, grant-funded technical assistance program. The workshops aimed to give Park Forest the tools to assess the effectiveness and sustainability of its current land use codes and create strategies to carry its smart growth vision forward.

“We are very pleased to have the expertise of our friends from Smart Growth America as we review our ordinances and make sure they are up-to-date, especially in regards to sustainability,” said Mayor John A. Ostenburg.

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Upcoming Webinars: November 2012

Tuesday, November 6 and Tuesday, November 13 3:00-4:00pm ET. Join the National Endowment for the Arts to learn how organizations can apply to the 2013 Our Town program.

Tuesday, November 13, 1:00-2:40pm ET. The Power of People: Engaging Stakeholders in Your Community’s Projects. Join NACo to learn strategies for county staff to engage elected officials and other community leaders in community planning projects.

Thursday, November 15, 1:00-2:15pm ET. Join the City of Moline, IL, the City of Cincinnati, OH, and the HUD-DOT-EPA Partnership for Sustainable Communities for a discussion of transit-oriented development (TOD) projects in each city.

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Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Highlights Five Cook County Communities in New Report

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), in partnership with the Metropolitan Planning Council and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, has released a new report, Homes for a Changing Region, highlighting the work of five communities in West Cook County. These communities received Community Challenge grants from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The report will provide housing supply and workforce data that will help the communities plan and acquire property for future affordable housing and mixed-use developments.

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Partnership in the News: Three Illinois Mayors Praise Regional Multimodal Station

Alton Mayor Tom Hoechst, Godfrey Mayor Mike McCormick, and Grafton Mayor Tom Thompson addressed economic development in each of their communities at a RiverBend Growth Association event this week, reports The Telegraph.

Among the many exciting initiatives, Mayor Hoechst spoke about the immense economic benefits that the $14 million dollar Alton Multimodal Station, funded by a Department of Transportation TIGER grant, will bring to the region.

Hoechst said the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery, or TIGER, grant would help boost the economy, and not just in Alton. Some 65 million people travel by rail and the improvements to the system would allow more people to come to town.


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Smart growth news – June 9, 2011

Report: Deferred road repair poses financial liability
American City and County, June 6, 2011
Some states’ habit of spending on new road construction rather than on regular repair have left many states’ roads in poor condition, and costs to repair those roads are rising faster than states can address them, according to a new report from Washington-based Smart Growth America (SGA) and Taxpayers for Common Sense. The report, “Repair Priorities: Transportation spending strategies to save taxpayer dollars and improve roads,” examines road conditions and spending priorities nationwide and recommends changes at both the state and federal levels that the organization says can reduce future liabilities, benefit taxpayers and create a better transportation system.

U.S. Road Expansion Costing Taxpayers
The City Fix blog, June 8, 2011
A smaller initial investment in renewed priorities of road maintenance actively reduces the scale of future costs, found a new report by Smart Growth America. “Rehabilitating a road that has deteriorated is substantially more expensive than keeping that road in good condition,” the report says.

Scrimping on highway repairs leaves states in a bind
GovPro.com, June 8, 2011
Some states’ habit of spending on new road construction rather than on regular repair have left many states’ roads in poor condition, and costs to repair those roads are rising faster than states can address them, according to a new report from Washington-based Smart Growth America (SGA) and Taxpayers for Common Sense.

Metro Detroit’s bus system fight may risk millions
Detroit Free Press, June 8, 2011
Metro Detroit has its most realistic chance in a generation of creating a rail and bus transit system that could transform how the region commutes and launch economic redevelopment from downtown to the suburbs. But if Detroit and tri-county leaders can’t agree on combining city and suburban bus systems — an ambition that has eluded the region for decades — they risk forfeiting millions in federal money.

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More TIGER, More Complete Streets

The Department of Transportation just announced the recipients of its $600 million TIGER II competitive grant program. Complete streets projects across the country will be funded.

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“Complete” Bridges Connect Communities

Complete Streets means more than single, unconnected streets. And in communities with natural barriers like rivers and lakes, building “complete” bridges is necessary to safely connect people to their destinations, regardless of how they travel.

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Weekly News – Three New Policies

This week in Complete Streets news, we celebrate three new policies, bringing the national total to 110 jurisdictions! We’ve also got news from Kentucky and Mississippi, plus much more.

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