Smart growth news – November 3

Obama Says Crumbling Infrastructure Is Costly to Economy, Threatens Growth
Bloomberg, November 2, 2011
President Barack Obama said the deterioration of the nation’s highways, bridges, airports and ports is costly to U.S. business and threatens future economic growth.

US House speaker promotes transportation projects
Businessweek, November 1, 2011
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner spoke in favor Monday of pumping federal money into transportation construction and speeding regulatory review of those projects — comments that seemed to resonate in a region longing for new bridges to ease traffic snarls.

Transportation secretary ‘optimistic’ about infrastructure’s chances in Congress
The Hill, November 2, 2011
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said Wednesday he’s optimistic legislation funding infrastructure projects could pass the Senate. “I’m optimistic, I think that if senators — both Republicans and Democrats — really are listening to people in their states they know that people are hurting,” he said Wednesday on MSNBC.

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NPR on the importance of transit and road repair for job creation

With President Barack Obama looking to stimulate a stagnant economy and create jobs through infrastructure investments in the American Jobs Act, it’s important to look at the lessons we learned from the previous stimulus.

NPR’s Yuki Noguchi talked with Smart Growth America’s President and CEO Geoff Anderson to discuss the importance of transit and repair of existing infrastructure for a infrastructure stimulus to be effective.

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Smart growth news – September 12

Earlier Stimulus Offers Lessons For A Second Round
NPR, September 9, 2011
Geoff Anderson, president and chief executive officer of Smart Growth America, a nonprofit, says some projects create more jobs for the money. Work on public transit and repairs to existing roads, for example, generated 50 to 70 percent more jobs than did work on new roads.

Focus on infrastructure earns associations’ approval of Obama’s Jobs Act
American City & County, September 9, 2011
SGA, which advocates for increases in transportation spending, contends that AJA should focus on streets and roads projects. “Investments in smart growth infrastructure like public transportation and repairing deteriorating infrastructure in existing communities will best achieve the goals outlined in [AJA],” SGA President and CEO Geoff Anderson said in a statement. “Rather than spending millions on land and equipment and obligating taxpayers to additional maintenance, these investments will reduce future costs and put a larger proportion of funds directly into the pockets of American families.”

‘I-69 equals jobs’ a persistent myth
Bloomington Alternative (Ind.), September 9, 2011
According to the article’s author, Keith Barry, figures from Smart Growth America show public transportation produces more jobs because it requires less acquisition of land; buses, trains and subways “need people to operate them and maintain the infrastructure”; and the workforce for public transit has more-diverse skills than does the workforce needed for highway construction.

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Transportation projects will stimulate new jobs

The unemployment rate is staying stubbornly above nine percent and the President is preparing to offer new ideas for job creations. Hopefully he will pay attention to what groups like the American Society of Engineers and Transportation for America are promoting: infrastructure and transportation will create good, sustainable jobs across the country.

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Now available: guaranteed high-return investments

In his New York Times blog yesterday, Edward Glaeser asks for nuance and careful thinking on the question of whether countries should spend their way out of the recession: there’s no one answer, and we need to look carefully at the situations different countries are in. Similarly with different kinds of public spending. Some work, some don’t. It’s a good argument, but one he then fails to apply to infrastructure.

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Stimulus TIGER Projects: What Happens When We Use Transportation Dollars to Strengthen Communities, States, and the Country

In today’s announcement of $1.5 billion in TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) awards, the US Department of Transportation (US DOT) showed the kinds of transportation projects that move people and freight in a way that makes places stronger, cleaner, and safer. DOT received 1,380 applications for the $1.5 billion pot, for a grand total of $56.5 billion in funds requested. The 51 projects announced under TIGER, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), include…

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New Report: What We Learned from the Stimulus

In the first ten months of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), investments in public transportation have created twice as many jobs per dollar as investments in highways. A new analysis by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, Smart Growth America, and U.S. PIRG shows that by mimicking funding levels for transportation set out in ARRA, the Jobs for Main Street Act passed by the U.S. House of Representatives in December missed an opportunity to create additional jobs where they are needed most. Read more on the report, “What we learned from the Stimulus, and how to use what we learned to speed job creation in the 2010 jobs bill.”

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Report Finds House Jobs Bill Misses Opportunity to Create Most Jobs

Lessons Learned from Recovery Act Show Superior Job Creation from Spending on Public Transportation WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new analysis by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, Smart Growth America, and U.S. PIRG shows that in the first ten months of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), investments in public transportation have created twice as … Continued

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Jobs data shows stimulus spending on public transportation produces more jobs, faster

An analysis of congressional data by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, the U.S. Public Interest Research Groups and Smart Growth America shows that stimulus funds spent on public transportation were a more effective job creator than stimulus funds spent on highways. In the 10 months since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) was signed, investing in public transportation produced twice as many jobs as investing in roads.

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Stimulus Woes: How One Coalition is Working for More Equitable Spending

For 17 straight years, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) has failed to meet their own, not-remarkably-ambitious hiring goals: that at least 11% of their workforce should be people of color and at least 6% should be women. (Minnesota is 85% white, though not 94% male.) The economic stimulus was meant to benefit everyone in hard economic times, partially through job creation in the transportation sector. African-Americans are hit disproportionately by job losses in a recession, but in Minnesota they haven’t received the full benefit from the stimulus money, an investment meant to aid everyone.

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