Partnership in the News: EPA grant for Brattleboro, VT looks to incorporate smart growth

The town of Brattleboro, Vermont has received a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities grant to aid in incorporating smart growth principles into local codes. Brattleboro is among 43 communities nationwide to receive a grant, and one of nine grants to focus on Sustainable Strategies for Small Cities and Rural Areas.

Photo credit: – Dougtone

The grant enables Brattleboro planning staff to work with an EPA official to address how smart growth and sustainable principles can be incorporated into the town’s zoning rules. Rob Francis, Brattleboro’s Planning Director, spoke of the town’s vision for the grant, “The core of our zoning regulations were written a long time ago, before the advent of the smart growth approach to zoning, and before concepts like preserving the rural landscape and supporting vibrant downtowns were a part of state policy. We want to include more of those ideas into the new zoning and subdivision regulations.”

The project will develop over the next year.

The Building Blocks program provides communities across the nation with the tools and funding they need to achieve development and sustainability goals to become more economically stable. The EPA provides assistance through workshops and direct consultation with local authorities leading to strategic plans to implement the communities’ goals. The program is a part of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, a collaboration between the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Department of Transportation (DOT), and the EPA.

Read more at the Brattleboro Reformer.