SGA News Clips, 6/1/11

Plan for Muskegon County’s economic development growth being designed Friday
, 5/31/11
Smart Growth America, a Washington, D.C.-based firm, was hired by the EPA to provide the technical assistance. According to its website, Smart Growth America works with communities to fight sprawl and save money. Geoff Anderson, Smart Growth America’s president and CEO, and two of the firm’s partners are expected to lead the Muskegon meeting.”

Smart growth: Bemidji seeks ways to enhance quality of city life
The Bemidji Pioneer, 5/28/11
“The two consultants in town with him were Will Schroeer, director of policy and research for Smart Growth America and former EPA economist, and Sarah Graham, an associate with Strategic Economics specializes in assessing the economic and fiscal impacts of land use policies. Bemidji is already embracing some of the tenets of smart growth, including the walkability and open space ideas.”

Group wants Congress to use ‘life-cycle budgeting’ for transportation bill
The Hill, 5/31/11
“As Congress pivots from the Federal Aviation Administration to trying to pass a new transportation bill this year, another group is out with an ad trying to influence lawmakers. This time however, it is a group that wants to convince elected officials to spend money on roads and bridges more wisely, not just spend more on them.”

A Vision of Oasis Beneath the Sprawl
The New York Times, 5/31/11
“At rush hour, two architects and a biologist stand on a footbridge over the highway that runs east and west through the center of this concrete cityscape. They are eager and young (the oldest, Elías Cattan, is 32) but could just as well be blind old prophets, because all they seem to see in the grime and traffic is a magnificent past and future.”

Mass transit preserves lifestyle of both the city and the suburbs
Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 5/31/11
“The Atlanta metro area faces an important crossroads in its history. Public transportation and urban growth policies will make-or-break the region and turn Atlanta into a world class city, or a blighted bust.”

N.Y.U. Lands Top Economist for Cities Project
The New York Times Economix blog, 5/27/11
“New York University has landed a star economist: Paul Romer, a leading expert on economic growth, who has been at Stanford for the last 15 years. Mr. Romer has been a visiting professor at N.Y.U. this year. Perhaps most interesting, Mr. Romer will run a new project — the Urban System Project, based at N.Y.U.’s Stern School of Business.”

Study: Building Roads to Cure Congestion Is an Exercise in Futility
DC Streetsblog, 5/31/11
“We hear it all the time: The road lobby insists that the only way to reduce mind-numbing traffic congestion on the roads they built is to build new roads. Federal funding gives huge blank checks to state DOTs, which tend to prioritize road building over transit, bridge maintenance or anything else. But mounting evidence suggests that building new roads won’t do anything to alleviate congestion. In a paper to be published soon in the American Economic Review, two University of Toronto professors have added to the body of evidence showing that highway and road expansion increases traffic by increasing demand. On the flip side, they show that transit expansion doesn’t help cure congestion either.”

Good, Clean (American) Jobs
The National Journal, 5/31/11
“It’s a familiar refrain to anyone involved in transportation: Infrastructure investment means jobs. But the transportation sector hasn’t cornered the market on the “jobs” talking point. For environmentalists, investment in clean technology means jobs. For unions and manufacturers, products built in the United States mean jobs.”