Smart growth news- June 11, 2012

Top stories

What it Means – House Votes on Three Transportation Proposals
Transportation Issues Daily – June 10, 2012
Last week the House had three votes related to transportation funding and policy. Here is a recap of each one.

The week ahead: Highway bill talks enter week five
The Hill’s Transportation blog – June 11, 2012
The talks in Congress about a possible new multiyear transportation are entering their fifth week.

The siren song of downtown as companies seek young tech workers
Crain’s Chicgao Business (IL) – June 11, 2012
Motorola Mobility and Sara Lee Corp. are willing to trade the suburbs for the city because workers like Nina Bieliauskas, a 37-year-old manager in Sears Holdings Corp.’s e-commerce business, live downtown and want to work there, too.

Coalition members in the news

Issaquah receives assistance to plan for long-term growth
Issaquah Press (WA) – June 9, 2012
Issaquah is receiving technical assistance to plan for long-term growth, through to a program at a nonprofit organization and a federal grant. Forterra, the former Cascade Land Conservancy, announced the technical assistance for Issaquah and other Washington communities Wednesday.

Local news

Bus ridership was rising in Wausau area before route cuts
Wausau Daily Herald (WI)- June 9, 2012
While cities across the country have watched demand for public transportation spike over the past year, the Wausau area has cut routes and riders.

Summerview Square revitalizes Main Street area of Norwalk
The Hour (CT)- June 10, 2012
Compact, walkable housing developments in neighborhoods located near transit can increase a community’s economic competitiveness, and reduce housing cost for its residents, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Smart Growth Guidelines for Sustainable Design & Development.

City Hopes Vacancy-Listing Website Will Draw Businesses
Elk Grove Patch (CA)- June 8, 2012
Large, vacant buildings aren’t good for a community’s economy or its image, but the city of Elk Grove hopes advertising some of its vacant properties will help to fill them.

Investment in downtown drives slow growth
Middletown Journal (OH) – June 9, 2012
The beginning of the spiral downward for downtown Middletown likely happened when Interstate 75 was built and development close to the interstate occurred, Hamet said. Then the boom of malls and outdoor lifestyle centers took away many of downtown’s anchors.

Lombard may allow gardening on vacant properties
Daily Herald (IL)- June 8, 2012
An idea of turning vacant properties in Lombard into temporary public garden plots took its first step forward this week.

Traffic must be addressed by Koa Ridge, Ho’opili plans
Honolulu Star Advertiser (HI) – June 10, 2012
The ordeal of commuters using the H-2 freeway corridor is now certain to become intolerable unless some serious transportation planning happens, and fast.

Indianapolis streets can serve as avenues for more than just car traffic
Indy Star- June 9, 2012
City-County Councilman John Barth stood on the corner of 39th and Illinois streets one night last week, explaining the benefits of a proposed ordinance to make such areas friendlier to those not in cars.

Salt Lake County residents love their trails
The Salt Lake Tribune- June 9, 2012
Salt Lake County residents want to see more trails winding through their communities — and they’re willing to see tax dollars spent to develop hiking and biking paths.

Oklahoma City hosts walkability tours, workshop with national expert
News OK- June 11, 2012
Oklahoma City is hosting two workshops and tours focusing on pedestrian access in the Plaza District and nearby Gatewood and Classen-10-Penn neighborhoods. Dan Burden, a national community planning expert, is leading the workshops.

Editorial & Opinion

Our view: Infrastructure a key factor in economic growth
Utica Observer-Dispatch (NY)- June 10, 2012
An estimated 22,000 vehicles travel through Utica via the New York State Thruway on any given day, according to state Department of Transportation calculations. That’s just about half of what passes through the city every day on the Route 12, otherwise known as the north-south arterial. That’s 40,000 reasons why upgrading that highway is vital.