Smart Growth News — September 30, 2014

‘Smart Cities’ Should Mean ‘Sharing Cities’
TIME — September 29, 2014
When mayors and developers focus on technology rather than people, smart quickly becomes stupid, threatening to exacerbate inequality and undermine the social cooperation essential to successful cities. After researching leading cities around the world, we’ve concluded that truly smart cities will be those that deploy modern technology in building a new urban commons to support communal sharing.

7 Simple Ways to Make Every City Friendlier to Pedestrians
WIRED — September 30, 2014
It’s difficult to retrofit existing cities and suburbs if redevelopment projects don’t present an opportunity to change up the infrastructure, but small-scale interventions can make a difference. “There are ways to get better. You don’t have to go right from suburbia to Manhattan in one fell swoop,” says Benjamin Grant, an urban design program manager at SPUR who helped write the guidelines.

Mapped: How the ‘creative class’ is dividing U.S. cities
The Washington Post — September 29, 2014
The housing options of the disadvantaged are invariably defined by what’s left over. If the wealthy want to live on the waterfront, the poor are driven inland. If high-paid professionals want to live close to the subway — picture the popular orange-line corridor in Arlington — then low-paid cashiers are pushed farther from transit. If upper-class college graduates want to live downtown, as is increasingly the case in many big cities, the poor are priced out to the periphery.

Most Americans Still Driving, but New Census Data Reveal Shifts at the Metro Level
Brookings Institution — September 29, 2014
Driving to work has been a staple in the American commute for decades, but it appears the country’s love affair with cars is stalling in many places. After years of sustained growth, driving levels are flat-lining, while more young people are opting for alternative transportation modes. Newly released Census data from the 2013 American Community Survey offers additional insight into the shifting nature of our daily commutes.

Local News

Study shows ‘unparalleled’ population shift away from farther suburbs toward urban areas
The Record (NJ) — September 30, 2014
New York City and nearby areas are growing, while counties farther away are not — an “unparalleled” population shift reflecting renewed interest in urban living instead of suburbs farther away, according to a new Rutgers University study.

UTA breaks ground on first-ever transit-oriented development in Sandy
ABC 4 Utah — September 30, 2014
Utah’s first ever transit-oriented development project (TOD) is officially underway in Sandy. In this first of its kind project, the Utah Transit Authority is partnering up with Hamilton Partners, a real estate development company, to build a 1,200 unit apartment complex that will also include retail and commercial office space. The $46 million phase one will include 271 units and is expected to be completed by next year.

Smart Growth Plan Sets Stage in Germantown
Memphis Daily News — September 30, 2014
In 2007, the city of Germantown adopted its Smart Growth plan and accompanying zoning regulations, which promoted more walkable, accessible mixed-use development in its central business district and surrounding neighborhoods. Germantown officials say the Smart Growth plan and zoning helped set the stage for an ambitious mixed-use development called Thornwood that McNeill Commercial Real Estate is proposing.

How to entice affordable housing on light rail lines
Finance and Commerce — September 30, 2014
As Finance & Commerce reported last week, Marquette Advisors found potential for 11,000 housing units within a half-mile of the 17 stations on the line. To meet housing goals, Marquette Advisors recommends that about 1,300 of those units are affordable at 60 percent or less of area median income (AMI) and another 2,250 units are affordable between 60 percent and 100 percent of AMI. The report estimates at least a $120 million gap for financing projects that are affordable.

Great Lakes cities found at the intersection of walkable and affordable
Great Lakes Echo — September 30, 2014
A group that’s developed a method of scoring a community’s walkability recently listed neighborhoods in a dozen U.S. cities that are not only easy to get around, they’re affordable to live in. They produced the list with Walk Score data – which measures walkability – the Cost of Living Index and the average rents for every major city in the country.