Smart growth news – September 21

Officials eye federal money for vacant homes
Baltimore Sun, September 18, 2011
While most of the debate on President Barack Obama’s jobs bill has focused on taxes, spending on infrastructure and unemployment insurance, housing officials in Baltimore and across the country are monitoring a little-remarked proposal to revitalize vacant and abandoned properties. Though housing officials generally praise the $15 billion program, called “Project Rebuild,” they say its impact will depend in large part on whether it is geared to address recent foreclosures or the more chronic abandonment of the sort found in cities such as Baltimore and Detroit.

Good news and bad on federal funding
New Urban Network, September 20, 2011
As Congress turns its attention to appropriations, advocates of smart growth and New Urbanism see the results so far as mixed. Reconnecting America expressed satisfaction Tuesday (Sept. 20) with one of the most recent Congressional decisions.

Daemen Summit Features Speakers on Smart Growth and Climate Smart Communities
Buffalo Rising (N.Y.), September 20, 2011
The term “Smart Growth” was coined by former Maryland Governor Parris Glendenning during his first gubernatorial campaign.  Glendenning used the phrase to describe a “smarter”, more sustainable alternative to sprawling development. Subsequently, in 1997, Maryland passed the first comprehensive state Smart Growth law, which became the prototype for Smart Growth reforms today.

How Obama’s plan for infrastructure bank would work
Washington Post, September 19, 2011
The proposal, modeled after a bipartisan bill in the Senate, would take $10 billion in start-up money and identify transportation, water or energy projects that lack funding. Eligible projects would need to be worth at least $100 million and provide “a clear public benefit.” The bank would then work with private investors to finance the project through cheap long-term loans or loan guarantees, with the government picking up no more than half the tab — ideally, much less — for any given project.

The Auburn mixed-use development to offer new apts and indie retail
Model D (Mich.), September 20, 2011
Nearly an entire block of Cass Avenue at Canfield will be renovated into a mixed-use green-friendly development offering apartments and retail spaces — aiding a severely tight rental market in Midtown.

Omnicare moving its headquarters to Cincinnati
Business Week, September 20, 2011
Cincinnati’s economic development director, Patrick Ewing, said the city has a lot to offer the company and its workers, including a strong business community — nine Fortune 500 companies call Cincinnati home — and a vibrant downtown with sports stadiums and renovated urban housing.

Eastern Rowan residents can talk about land use Thursday
Salisbury Post (N.C.), September 21, 2011
Morgan said he hopes development will lean more toward services and retail businesses rather than industries. In their recommendations, the county planning board and staff agree with him.