Tag: Tennessee

With vision for a more walkable downtown, Alcoa, TN digs in to its zoning codes

alcoaChris Duerksen (left) and Roger Millar (right) lead Alcoa, TN’s technical assistance workshop on smart growth zoning for small cities.

The aluminum industry brought jobs and new residents to Alcoa, TN over the last 100 years. Now the city is working to evolve and remain vibrant for 100 years to come. An update to the city’s development and zoning codes is one way they’re making that happen.

To get that project off the ground, the City of Alcoa and the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) welcomed Smart Growth America and Clarion Associates for a technical assistance workshop on September 1 and 2, 2015. Roger Millar, Smart Growth America’s Vice President of Technical Assistance, and Chris Duerksen, Clarion’s Senior Counsel, met Alcoa leaders and community members to talk about smart growth zoning codes for small cities. The workshop was designed to show how zoning code changes can help create vibrant town centers within small cities, as well as how more compact, walkable development can boost the local economy and reduce public expenses.

Posted in Local, Smart growth zoning codes for small cities, States, Technical assistance, Tennessee | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Knoxville, TN welcomes Smart Growth America for workshop on transit-oriented development

knoxville-tnKnoxville wants to build on the success of places like Market Square (above). Photo via.

Downtown Knoxville, TN, is seeing a resurgence. New businesses and residents are moving to the area, and the City is working hard to bring similar success to neighborhoods throughout the city. Could investments in public transportation help?

To help answer that question, leaders in Knoxville welcomed Smart Growth America on July 15 and 16, 2015 for a technical assistance workshop on transit-oriented development. Chris Zimmerman, Smart Growth America’s Vice President of Economic Development, and Dena Belzer, President of Strategic Economics, spoke with elected leaders, municipal staff, representatives from regional and state agencies, and Knoxville residents about how investment in public transit could multiply the city’s economic development successes.

Posted in Economic and Fiscal Benefits workshop, Technical assistance, Tennessee | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Department of Planning Executive Director Rick Bernhardt on community engagement for a better Nashville, TN

rbernhardtRick Bernhardt, right, discusses different development strategies with Nashville residents. Photo by NashvilleNext via Twitter.

Nashville, TN, is a creative city with a rich history in the arts that has recently seen new growth in both its population and economy. Rick Bernhardt, the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Nashville-Davidson County Planning Department and member of Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council, is working to make sure the city’s development supports that growth.

Posted in Local Leaders Council, Tennessee | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Hear the recap: Repair Priorities 2014 online discussion

Yesterday we unveiled Repair Priorities 2014: Transportation spending strategies to save taxpayer dollars and improve roads. The release featured an online discussion with leaders from Smart Growth America and Taxpayers for Common Sense, as well as state transportation department representatives from Vermont, Michigan and Tennessee. Panelists shared insights and strategies for how states are managing their road repair needs in a time of constrained budgets by using tools like asset management practices; focusing repair investments on the most heavily used roads; setting aggressive targets for pavement conditions; and using cost-benefit analysis to prioritize road investments.

If you were not able to join us for yesterday’s event, an archived recording is now available.

Watch the archived webinar
Download the presentation (PDF)

Joining yesterday’s event were Roger Millar, Vice President, Smart Growth America; Steve Ellis, Vice President, Taxpayers for Common Sense; Rich Tetreault, Director of Program Development, Vermont Agency on Transportation, Polly Kent, Administer, Intermodal Policy Division, Michigan Department of Transportation; and Steve Allen, Strategic Transportation Investments Director, Tennessee Department of Transportation.

Thank you to everyone who participated. The event provided valuable insights for how states can improve road conditions for drivers and the financial outlook of America’s DOTs at the same time.

Posted in Michigan, Reports, Tennessee, Vermont, Webinars | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Mayor Madeline Rogero on brownfields redevelopment in Knoxville, TN

Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council recently interviewed Madeline Rogero, mayor of Knoxville, Tennessee, to ask her how local governments can catalyze brownfields redevelopment and jumpstart revitalization. In the video above, Rogero discusses how strategic investments by local government have made brownfield sites in Knoxville more attractive to potential developers.

Posted in Brownfields, Local Leaders Council, Tennessee, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Completing Our Streets: It takes more than facts to achieve the Complete Streets conversion

fig6-1-open_Nashville signing-2
Nashville, TN Mayor Karl Dean signed a Complete Streets Executive Order in 2010, joined by former Councilmember Erik Cole and former city staffers Toks Omishakin and Chris Bowles. Photo by Gary Layda, City of Nashville.

This post is the second in a twice-monthly series of excerpts from Completing Our Streets: The Transition to Safe and Inclusive Transportation Networks, the forthcoming book from Island Press by Barbara McCann, founder of the National Complete Streets Coalition. The book discusses the keys to the movement’s success, and how places and practitioners in the United States are tackling the challenges of putting a new transportation paradigm into daily practice. Look for the book out on October 14, 2013.

All National Complete Streets Coalition Platinum Partners and those who upgrade to the next Partnership level will receive a signed copy of Completing Our Streets. Become a Coalition Partner today!

From Chapter 6: Practitioners as Champions

After we started the National Complete Streets Coalition, I spent a lot of time developing a series of focused fact sheets that brought together the best and most specific answers we could find on every topic related to Complete Streets. The website was soon overflowing with reports and resources on every aspect of the benefits of Complete Streets. But somehow they were never enough. They never slaked the hunger from people around the country for very specific information about how to answer a challenging question with an indisputable fact. Over time, I realized I was learning how to overcome barriers not by regurgitating facts but by hearing stories about how others had made change happen.

Posted in Complete Streets, Complete Streets Coalition | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Learn how Memphis, TN, is creating Complete Streets with new policy and implementation brief

Broad Ave., Memphis, TN
The reconfigured Broad Avenue in Memphis. Photo by Justin Fox Burks.

Earlier this year Memphis, TN, passed the 500th Complete Streets policy in the United States. In a new policy and implementation brief, we detail how Memphis achieved its Complete Streets successes so far, the ongoing efforts in the region and the work that remains to be done.

Posted in Complete Streets, Complete Streets Implementation, Complete Streets Local, Complete Streets Policy, Tennessee | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Complete Streets leaders celebrate 500 policies and look forward to the movement’s future


On August 14, 2013, Smart Growth America and the National Complete Streets Coalition celebrated the 500 communities across the United States that have made their streets safer and more accessible for everyone who uses them with Complete Streets policies, and looked ahead to the future of the Complete Streets movement.

The 500th Complete Streets Policy celebration honored Memphis, TN for passing the milestone policy, and featured a panel of experts including Rich Weaver of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA); Kyle Wagenschutz, Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator for the City of Memphis,TN; Art Guzzetti, Vice President of Policy at APTA; Colleen Hawkinson, AICP, Manager, Strategic Planning Branch, DDOT; Darren Smith, Policy Representative, National Association of Realtors and Jeff Miller, President & CEO, Alliance for Biking and Walking. The panel discussion was moderated by Roger Millar, PE AICP, Director of the National Complete Streets Coalition.

Posted in Complete Streets, Complete Streets Coalition, Complete Streets Policy, District of Columbia, Events, Tennessee | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Memphis adopts the 500th Complete Streets policy in the U.S.

On August 14th, 2013, the National Complete Streets Coalition will mark the adoption of the country’s 500th Complete Streets policy with an event celebrating the communities across the nation that have committed to building safer, more accessible streets for all users. Please join us for a live video stream of the event’s speakers and panels. In the meantime, we invite you to get in on the conversation at our Facebook page or with the #500policies hashtag on Twitter.

The celebration will be focusing in part on Memphis, Tennessee, whose new Complete Streets measure pushed us over the 500-policy mark. Earlier this year, Mayor A.C. Wharton signed an executive order directing that new road facilities and major renovations in Memphis accommodate all users and all modes. In addition to the development of a new multimodal Street Design Guide, per the executive order, Mayor Wharton announced plans to further expand the city’s bicycle facilities, including construction of 15 miles of new protected bike lanes. This official embrace of Complete Streets is part of a remarkable, citizen-driven turnaround for a city so long built around the automobile that Bicycling magazine twice named it one of America’s worst cities for bicycling.

Remaking streets from the ground up

For years, dedicated Memphians had worked to improve conditions for walking, biking, and transit in the city, but the grassroots movement for safer, more vibrant streets most visibly coalesced a few years ago in the Broad Avenue area in east Memphis. Originally the commercial corridor for nearby railcar manufacturing, Broad Avenue had fallen into neglect by the 1990s, with only a few active businesses in a landscape of fast roads, acres of parking, endless curb cuts, and indistinguishable sidewalks–a bleak environment where nobody would walk if they could help it.

Posted in Blog, Complete Streets | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Bill Fulton speaks about smart growth strategies and unveils new research at Nashville Next

Bill Fulton speaking in Nashville
Bill Fulton speaking last night in Nashville. Photo via Nashville Next.

Smart Growth America’s Vice President of Policy Development and Implementation Bill Fulton spoke in Nashville last night as part of the Nashville Next speaker series.

During the discussion Fulton unveiled new research about development strategies in Nashville, including ways the city could reduce costs and improve its bottom line. Here’s what attendees had to say about the talk.

Posted in Events, Tennessee | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment