Our transportation system values some lives more than others


U.S. transportation policy focuses first and foremost on ensuring that drivers can travel with as little delay as possible. But this laser focus on speed sidelines other more important considerations like the preservation of human life and the health impacts of vehicle pollution. Prioritizing safety in our transportation policy—at the federal, state, and local levels—would be a major step towards a more equitable transportation system.

Advocacy Transportation

Working to ensure that Opportunity Zones are a force for good in your community


With the creation of a new national academy for Opportunity Zones, Smart Growth America and our LOCUS coalition of responsible real estate investors continue to be on the forefront of helping communities use this tax incentive as a force for equitable growth that’s mutually beneficial for both investors and most importantly the people who live and do business in them. 

Economic development LOCUS Technical assistance

Suburban business parks are dead, and six other things we learned at the LOCUS Leadership Summit

Opportunity Rising, last week’s LOCUS National Leadership Summit in Arlington, VA, was a vital gathering, uniting responsible real estate developers and investors with local elected officials and transportation and land-use planners. During the wide range of workshops, panels and sessions, Smart Growth America staff absorbed a few important themes and ideas. Here are seven.

Economic development LOCUS

A decade of lessons on good zoning


Looking back at 100-plus submissions for the Driehaus Form-Based Codes Award over the years reveals how the practice of form-based coding has matured and evolved. The quality of submissions has improved since the early years and municipal planning staff are increasingly engaged in drafting codes for their communities. It’s clear that form-based codes are growing in popularity and in many contexts they are being paired with policies to achieve more equitable development.

Form-Based Codes

Getting intentional about equitable TOD in Chicago


This month on Building Better Communities with Transit we talk with Kendra Freeman, the director of community engagement for the regional Metropolitan Planning Council, about TOD in Chicago. A recent update to the city’s TOD policy puts a new focus on equitable development in a city that has seen stark differences in outcomes based on zip code.

Technical assistance Transportation

A conversation with Tamika Butler


On January 15th, the National Complete Streets Coalition is hosting the Ninth Annual Complete Streets Dinner with special guest Tamika L. Butler. We had an opportunity to speak with Tamika about how she got involved with transportation work, her take on the future of transit equity, and why she enjoys working with the National Complete Streets Coalition.

Complete Streets

What did we learn at Intersections last week? Personal reflections from our staff

Intersection Registration table at Music City Center in Nashville
Before the Intersections conference in Nashville last week, some people might have been scratching their heads at the idea of a conference bringing together artists with transportation experts. But once the conference started, everyone keyed in on how much they could learn from one another and what they could accomplish together. Here are a few personal reflections from our staff about Intersections: Creating Culturally Complete Streets.

Complete Streets Transportation