Smart growth news – December 2

The Best Smart Growth Projects in America
The Atlantic, December 1, 2011
One of the country’s very best revitalizing neighborhoods and one of our most articulate city plans for a more sustainable future are among this year’s five national honorees for achievement in smart growth, awarded by the Environmental Protection Agency.  The other very worthy winners include a green learning center in a small South Dakota town, a green, affordable apartment building in New Mexico and an innovative civic gathering space in Illinois.

More Broken Bridges than Golden Arches: U.S. Urban Infrastructure Infographic
Sacramento Bee, December 1, 2011
“There are more deficient bridges in our metropolitan areas than there are McDonald’s restaurants in the entire country,” stated James Corless, Director of Transportation for America.

‘Walkable’ Steps Into Spotlight
New York Times, December 1, 2011
Walkability is an asset of an increasing number of Island communities as the fabric of suburbia changes, and it was a must for Judy Rosenthal, a health care writer from Great Neck, when she recently sought a new home for her mother not far from her own.

Older People Are a Larger Portion of U.S. Population
New York Times, December 2, 2011
This is a new situation for the Sun Belt, Dr. Frey said, where people flocked over the past decade for work in areas that were booming. Now those people are aging in place, creating growing populations of older people, who will be fighting for scarce government resources.

Claire McCaskill: Spend Money On U.S. Infrastructure, Not Troubled Afghanistan Programs
Huffington Post, December 1, 2011
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) is introducing an amendment to the defense authorization bill that would shift funds from troubled Afghanistan infrastructure programs to the Transportation Department so that the money could instead be spent on U.S. infrastructure.

Urban Land Institute partners with high schools for responsible land use
Financial News & Daily Record (Fla.), December 1, 2011
The Urban Land Institute North Florida partnered with the Episcopal School of Jacksonville and Nease High School in Ponte Vedra for an exercise in urban planning.

Area panel suggests commuting alternatives
Chicago Tribune, December 2, 2011
Employees at a north suburban office of Grainger Inc. will soon be able to eliminate driving from their commuting equation. In January, Grainger, a Fortune 500 maker of industrial goods, will begin offering shuttle service between its Lake Forest offices and suburban commuter rail stations.

Clarkstown To Receive Land Use Award
Nanuet Patch (N.Y.), December 1, 2011
The Town of Clarkstown receives the Founders Award on Friday from The Theodore W. Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes for its Comprehensive Plan. The Kheel Center is part of the Land Use Law Center of the Pace University Law School.  Work on the town’s comprehensive plan began in 2007 and was completed in 2009 and implementation of it continues.

Coalition members in the news

Grow New Jersey advanced by Assembly committee
NJBIZ, December 1, 2011
The Grow New Jersey Assistance Program, which will provide tax credits to businesses that make capital investments, was advanced by the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Thursday…Chris Sturm, of New Jersey Future, a nonprofit that promotes smart growth, said without changes, the bill poses a risk to the Urban Transit Hub program, and asked the committee to amend the bill.

Opinion and Editorial

Look outside the beltway to find America’s economic innovators
CNN, November 10, 2011
With federal politics mired in gridlock and the economy stuck in neutral, Americans are hungry for new ways to drive economic growth, foster job creation, and restore prosperity. As Parag Khanna and David Skilling so aptly noted in their recent essay, “Big Ideas from Small Places,” these new approaches are most likely to emerge from “small countries, city-states, [and] city-regions” – places where innovation is the only option, where cooperation and collaboration rule the day.