Smart growth news – October 26

The 19 Building Types That Caused the Recession
The Atlantic Cities, October 25, 2011
Among his favorite examples of all the standard real-estate products built ad nauseum across the country over the last half-century, Christopher Leinberger likes to point to the Grocery Anchored Neighborhood Center. This creation is generally about 12 to 15 acres in size on a plot of land that’s 80 percent covered in asphalt. It’s located on the going-home side of a major four-to-eight lane arterial road, where it catches people when they’re most likely to be thinking about what to buy for dinner.

The Federal Government’s Smart Growth-Inspired Landlord
Streetsblog, October 25, 2011
Robert Peck says he’ll gladly pay more to locate office buildings near transit – the time saved commuting makes it worthwhile.

WNY development panel airs plan
Buffalo News (N.Y.), October 25, 2011
Creating jobs and finding ways to get the biggest bang for the buck out of investments made in Western New York are emerging as top priorities in the strategic plan being developed by a state-backed economic development council. … It encourages “smart growth” that minimizes sprawl and leads to investment in the region’s cities and town centers.

Council to consider changes to speed up downtown redevelopment
Santa Clarita Valley Signal (Calif.), October 25, 2011
“We are trying to create a place where people can shop and eat at restaurants and experience the street,” Planning Manager Lisa Webber said. “We’re trying to create that environment.

Geography of housing recovery favors cities and walkable neighborhoods
NRDC Switchboard, October 26, 2011
The map just above shows the degree to which twelve jurisdictions in the Washington, DC metropolitan area have experienced a housing recovery.  In particular, the percentages reflect how the August 2011 average home sales price in each city or county compares to the average sales price experienced in each at the peak of the region’s housing market, in November 2005.  The numbers, which were published in The Washington Post earlier this month, are based on research by the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis.

Planners Fret HUD Funding
Brownsville Herald (Texas), October 24, 2011
One good thing about grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is that the results are tangible — better roads and neighborhoods, for instance. When those funds are cut, the results are equally tangible.

Critics attack brownfield idea
St. Petersburg Times (Fla.), October 26, 2011
In turn, proponents say, the designation boosts the local economy with newly created jobs, and eventually grows the tax base. The flagship example of a successful brownfield project is Ybor City’s Ikea, built on a 29-acre longtime cannery site that was cleaned up and redeveloped into the 353,000-square-foot mega retailer and restaurant known for its inexpensive furniture and Swedish meatballs. It brought 500 construction and 400 in-store jobs to Tampa.

Kirk touts public-private transportation concept
Southtown Star (Ill.), October 24, 2011
Citing how President Abraham Lincoln pushed the largest transportation program in the nation’s history, the transcontinental railway, by using public-private partnerships, Kirk wants to take a similar approach to build new highways, rail lines and airports.

Opinion

No reason to change Smart Growth
Sheboygan Press (Wis.), October 25, 2011
A bill that would allow communities across Wisconsin to opt out of comprehensive land-use planning would be a step back, not the step forward the sponsors claim.

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