Why we stayed in the city


Raising children in the city could be considered somewhat novel in a country where the conventional wisdom dictates a move to the suburbs as a family grows. But one family in Washington, DC is glad they stayed in the city, which they believe offers benefits that suburbs often can’t replicate. The challenge is to ensure that more families can reap the same benefits from living and growing in a city.

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How can the change coming to suburbs be harnessed for good?

The notion of the suburbs is nestled deeply in the collective imagination in America, but as we wrote recently, “the suburbs of today aren’t necessarily the suburbs of yesteryear.” In a future that is increasingly urban, where suburbs are rapidly changing, what changes should they consider to stay prosperous and resilient? 

Complete Streets Economic development Form-Based Codes LOCUS Transportation Uncategorized

The Smart Growth America ballpark championship

Here in Smart Growth America’s home of Washington, DC, the city is abuzz with World Series fever as game three gets underway tonight at Nationals Park near the Navy Yard area of the District of Columbia. This got us thinking: which Major League ballparks are in neighborhoods with development patterns most consistent with smart growth principles? 

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Federal transportation policy is undermining any progress on climate


The conversation on climate change tends to focus on a few big things—electric vehicles, renewable energy, putting a price on carbon. But no matter how much progress we make on those fronts, Democrats and Republicans remain deeply committed to antiquated policy that undermines any action we take on climate change: spending billions to build new highways, encouraging more and more driving.

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Now Hiring: LOCUS Real Estate Policy & Analysis Fellow


LOCUS: Responsible Real Estate Developers and Investors seeks a full-time Real Estate Policy and Analysis Fellow to support our national coalition of smart growth developers and investors advocating for sustainable, equitable, and walkable development in America’s cities and towns. LOCUS is a program of Smart Growth America, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization working to improve everyday life for people across the country through better planning and development.

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(Re)coding communities for smart growth


There’s a secret weapon available to communities that want to modernize their zoning codes and help make smarter growth the norm. FBCI’s Codes for Communities is a wide-ranging technical assistance program at Smart Growth America that covers all kinds of zoning reform and guidance on form-based codes. In just two years, the program has had tremendous impact in communities of all sizes across America.

Form-Based Codes Technical assistance Uncategorized

Get to know Minnesota’s new Community Vitality Fellow Marcus Young


As announced earlier this week, Marcus Young, a behavioral artist, will be embedded within the Minnesota Department of Transportation for a year serving as an artist-in-residence in a program created by Smart Growth America. Marcus will be taking a fresh look at the agency’s goals to promote economic vitality, improve safety, support multimodal transportation systems, and create healthier communities.  

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Back to the burbs: given no other choice

The popular narrative about younger generations aging and leaving urban centers is presented as inevitable. But most news stories fail to examine why many younger people are taking up residence in suburbia—or whether or not the suburbs they’re choosing have more in common with cities or the exurbs their parents preferred. Perhaps their move to the suburbs is more a product of constrained housing supply that leaves them with little choice but to decamp as they grow.

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