Smart Growth News – January 16, 2013

Vacation Homes for the Rich, Courtesy of Uncle Sam
The American Prospect – January 16, 2013
A new report highlights how much the federal government is spending on real-estate programs—and who’s benefitting.

4 Ways the Feds are Making Transit Better
Atlantic Cities – January 16
Much of Washington is in obstruction mode these days, but not the Federal Transit Administration.

America pedaling toward more bike-friendly housing as more commuters cycle
Washington Post – January 16, 2013
In 21st century America, a 19th century invention — the bicycle — is figuring more and more in the calculations of apartment hunters and others looking for suitable digs.

Smart Growth Collides with Planning in Alexandria
Transportation Nation – January 15, 2013
What happens when the principles of smart growth collide with transit planning? That’s the case on Jefferson Davis Highway in Alexandria, where a new affordable housing complex is planned, but it comes saddled with a paid parking lot.

1 in 5 in Suburbs In or Near Poverty
Daily Herald (IL) – January 16, 2013
Carolyn Schutz has a college degree from Marquette University in Milwaukee, plus decades of experience as a teacher and a business manager. She actively searches for full-time work, but the 66-year-old Wheaton woman has been able to land only a part-time administrative job that pays $8.25 an hour.

Local News

Smart Growth offers resources to Westmoreland communities
TribLive News (PA) – January 15, 2013
Officials with Smart Growth Partnership held an informal community partners meeting in Mt. Pleasant last week, talking about the program and its vision and benefits to representatives of six local municipalities.

Naperville, IL Program Opens Up Data On Spending
Next City – January 15, 2013
With smaller budgets, municipalities across the country have had to find ways to save money.

Vacant Homes Plague D.C. Suburbs
Planetizen – January 15, 2013
Even in the Washington D.C. region, which survived the Great Recession with one of the strongest economies in the country, foreclosed and vacant homes are a stubborn presence in many neighborhoods, including affluent ones.

Guest view: St. Clair County’s many miles of roads just promote sprawl (IL) – January 15, 2013
Roads, it’s all about roads. The St. Louis region has more lane-miles per person than any of America’s 25 largest metro regions–nearly double the average.

Editorial: Commuting in crowded N.J. stinks, but tax credit for mass transit riders helps
Times of Trenton (NJ) – January 16, 2013
There has been a dearth of practical programs issuing from Congress of late.