Smart growth news – September 16

The Case for a D.C.-Baltimore Mega-Region
Atlantic Cities, September 16, 2011
Last Friday, Maryland released the latest draft of PlanMaryland, the state’s ambitious effort “to encourage smart growth and to discourage sprawl.” The new draft takes into account comments received since the previous version, which was released in April. It makes a compelling case for developing Maryland into higher density residential pockets strategically placed along established lines of road, transit, and water infrastructure. If it succeeds, Maryland circa 2035 will be dominated by a strong orange-red D.C.-Baltimore mega-region.

Philadelphia plan aims high for vitality, resilience
NRDC Switchboard, September 16, 2011
Earlier this year, the city adopted the first key phase of the plan, a “Citywide Vision” that stresses such important topics as efficient transportation and connectivity, parks and open space, diverse and authentic neighborhoods, and taking advantage of legacy industrial areas ripe for redevelopment.

‘Slice of Saugatuck’ highlights neighborhood’s resilience
Westport News (Conn.), September 15, 2011
“We wanted to bring a neighborhood and village feel back to Saugatuck,” said Gault President Sam Gault. “The vision was to have a true smart-growth, mixed-use project where you have people working and utilizing the retail shops as well as people living there.”

Candidates Pledge to Revitalize Downtown Sayville
Sayville Patch (N.Y.), September 15, 2011
Republican officials said they have several ideas for bringing businesses back to Sayville. Town of Islip Councilman Steven Flotteron (R) said he would like to promote “smart growth.”

More public transit in city’s plans
Omaha World-Herald (Neb.), September 16, 2011
The plan, expected to be completed next year, runs through 2035 and is likely to call for a larger public transportation system, more bicycle lanes and a streetcar line.

NYC parking spaces get transformed in global event
Associated Press (via Wall Street Journal), September 16, 2011
New Yorkers are transforming 30 metered parking spots around the five boroughs into green spaces, performance areas and outdoor classrooms.

Urban area plan introduced
Northern Virginia Daily, September 16, 2011
County planning officials held the first of two public introduction meetings for the Senseny/Eastern Frederick Urban Area Plan, which drew on residents’ input. The smaller area plan covers 16,000 acres east of Interstate 81, from the city limits to the border with Clarke County, Red Bud Run and Parkins Mill. Creation of the urban area plan comes on the heels of the recently approved larger, state-mandated comprehensive plan. Now county officials can address future planning for smaller areas.

NJ town praised for renewal gets rating downgrade
Associated Press, September 16, 2011
With well-regarded restaurants, a walkable main street dotted with yoga studios and rail service that zips commuters to jobs in downtown Philadelphia, this town of 14,000 is held high as a national model of smart growth.

Brown says Downtown needs ‘holistic approach’
Financial News & Daily Record (Fla.), September 16, 2011
Mayor Alvin Brown said Wednesday that Downtown development, one of his campaign pledges and a platform in his economic development vision, must be considered holistically.

Opinion: UN program would end property rights
Knoxville News Sentinel (Tenn.), September 15, 2011
It is imperative to familiarize yourself with a plan from the United Nations called AGENDA 21/Sustainable Development. Words like “smart growth,” “sustainable development” and “mixed-use, high-density urban development” have become commonplace. Many cities have already signed onto this U.N. plan at the local level and set up Offices of Sustainable Development. While mayor, Gov. Bill Haslam signed Knoxville up for the International Council for Local Environmental Initiativesin 2007, and every year Knoxville taxpayers send $2 million to the facilitators through the Office of Sustainable Development directly to the U.N.