"Promoting Affordable and Fair Housing near Transit, Jobs, and Town Centers" webinar materials now available online

Thank you to everyone who attended Smart Growth America’s Sustainable Communities Network webinar “Promoting Affordable and Fair Housing near Transit, Jobs, and Town Centers” last week. This webinar was hosted by Smart Growth America, PolicyLink, Reconnecting America, and the National Housing Conference.

Included on this webinar are practitioners taking steps to ensure that housing for families at all income levels is available in location-efficient and opportunity-rich areas. Following an overview of tools available to create and preserve affordable homes in areas where transportation costs are likely to be low, learn how some of these tools have been implemented in Denver, Colorado as Denver expands its public transportation system. Included is a discussion of policies and legal decisions that help to ensure communities create their fair share of homes for low- and moderate-income families in New Jersey, as well as strategies to build public support for well-located affordable homes.

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Additional materials now available: Applying for HUD Regional Planning Grants

On July 14, Smart Growth America along with the American Planning Association hosted a webinar that provided tips for organizations interested in applying for the next round of HUD Regional Planning Grants. The webinar included discussion from past Partnership for Sustainable Communities grant recipients, advice from a firm that has written several successful applications, and information about criteria that the Partnership uses to grade applications. Presentations from the webinar are also available.

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Upcoming webinar: TIGER grants and rural America

The US Department of Transportation has announced a new grant opportunity for rural communities across the country. The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant program is a great opportunity for rural communities to leverage federal funds for local transportation projects. To help communities apply these very competitive grants, the American Public Transportation Association, the National Association of Development Organizations, the National League of Cities, PolicyLink, Reconnecting America, Rural Assembly, Smart Growth America, and Transportation for America have joined together to encourage rural communities to submit superior applications for this funding.

If you plan to apply for this year’s round of TIGER grants or wish to learn more about the program and the application process, join us for a webinar on Wednesday, August 3, 2011 at 2:00 PM EDT. The webinar will provide basic tips for outreach and education about the TIGER program, including an overview of TIGER, discussion of innovative rural transportation projects, and examples from two successful rural projects from earlier TIGER grant cycles.

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Webinar materials now available: Applying for HUD Regional Planning Grants

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced an additional $67 million investment in stronger, more sustainable communities that connect housing to jobs while fostering local innovation and building a clean energy economy.

A webinar jointly hosted by Smart Growth America and the American Planning Association last week provided tips from past Partnership for Sustainable Communities grant recipients, advice from a firm that has written several successful applications, and information about criteria that the Partnership uses to grade applications. Presenting at the webinar were Tim Torma, Deputy Director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Sustainable Communities. The Office of Sustainable Communities coordinates with other agencies as well as state and local governments to promote smart growth. Also presenting was David Rouse, AICP, a principal with the planning and design firm Wallace Roberts & Todd based in Philadelphia. He has been involved with a number of 2010 Sustainable Communities grant applications, including WRT’s current work as a subgrantee for the New River Valley Regional Consortium in Virginia.

Jeff Hirt, Sustainable Planning Project Manager at the Mid-America Regional Council in Kansas City, MO, also presented. With more than 60 regional partners, the Mid-America Regional Council received a $4.25 million planning grant from HUD for the implementation of the Regional Plan for Sustainable Development, a Category 2 grant. And finally Mark Kirstner, Senior Transportation Planner with the Piedmont Authority for Regional Transportation, and the project manager for the Piedmont Triad Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Project also presented on the webinar. The Piedmont project is a $1.6 million Regional Planning Grant Program.

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Upcoming webinar: Applying for HUD Regional Planning Grants

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced an additional $67 million investment in stronger, more sustainable communities that connect housing to jobs while fostering local innovation and building a clean energy economy.

If you plan to apply for this year’s round of HUD Sustainable Communities Regional Planning grants, join us for a webinar on Thursday, July 14, 2011 at 2:00 PM EDT. You will hear tips from past Partnership for Sustainable Communities grant recipients, receive advice from a firm that has written several successful applications, and learn the criteria that the Partnership uses to grade applications.

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"Advocacy Training 101" webinar materials now available online

Thank you to everyone who attended Smart Growth America’s Sustainable Communities Network webinar last week, “Advocacy Training 101.” Telling members of Congress about the benefits of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities is a crucial part of supporting these valuable federal programs.

Christopher Coes, Manager of LOCUS, discussed tools and tips about how to effectively advocate for the Partnership. This webinar explains the skills and tools you need to engage Congressional representatives one-on-one or with a group, including the most effective methods of communication, messaging and how to respond to decision makers’ concerns.

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Join us Thursday: Tips for effective advocacy

Beginning at the end of June, Members of Congress will be back at the offices in their home states meeting with constituents. This is a great opportunity to tell your representatives about your support for the Partnership for Sustainable Communities.

Join us on Thursday, June 23, 2011 from 2-3 PM EDT to learn tips for successful advocacy. Click here to sign up for this training.

Among the techniques discussed in this webinar will be how to schedule and hold a successful meeting with your Members of Congress, how to engage others and bring a group to the meeting, and how to effectively talk about the Partnership for Sustainable Communities and its benefits.

Sign up today for Smart Growth America’s advocacy training: click here to register.

Can’t schedule a meeting for this recess? That’s ok. You can still learn useful information from this training opportunity and schedule a meeting in your district office at any time! Contact jholmberg [at] smartgrowthamerica [dot] org or 202-207-3355 x121 with any questions.

You can learn about trainings like this before they happen: Click here to join the Sustainable Communities Network.

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Celebrating Two Years of Partnership: webinar materials now online

On June 16, 2009, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joined together to help communities nationwide improve access to affordable housing, increase transportation options, and lower transportation costs while protecting the environment to better support local economies.

Beth Osborne, Deputy Assistant Secretary, DOT; Shelley Poticha, Director, Office of Sustainable Housing and Communities, HUD; John Frece, Director, Office of Sustainable Communities, EPA; and Derek Douglas, Special Assistant to the President for Urban Affairs joined Smart Growth America’s Sustainable Communities Network on Thursday, June 17 for a webinar to discuss the Partnership’s success over the past two years and what’s next for this dynamic interagency alliance.

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Partnership for Sustainable Communities marks two years of work across the country

On June 16, 2009, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joined together to help communities nationwide improve access to affordable housing, increase transportation options, and lower transportation costs while protecting the environment to better support local economies.

Two years later, the interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities is working to coordinate federal investments in housing, transportation, water and other infrastructure to make neighborhoods more prosperous, allow people to live closer to jobs, save households time and money, and reduce pollution. The Partnership has visited with residents and business leaders in hundreds of communities, coordinated to provide new funding opportunities and worked to reduce barriers at the federal level.

In a post on the White House blog, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, DOT Secretary Ray LaHood and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson explain the strengths of coordinating between agencies.

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"Advancing Equity in Sustainable Community Planning and Implementation" webinar materials now available online

Thank you to everyone who attended Smart Growth America’s Sustainable Communities Network webinar “Advancing Equity in Sustainable Community Planning and Implementation.” This webinar was hosted by Smart Growth America, PolicyLink, Reconnecting America, and the National Housing Conference.

Listen in: Click here to view the archived webinar

Speaking on the webinar were Bob Allen, Director of Transportation and Housing Programs at Urban Habitat; Jessie Grogan, Policy Analyst at the Metropolitan Area Planning Council of Boston, MA; and Jonathan London, Director of the Center for Regional Change and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Human and Community Development at the University of California, Davis. This webinar was moderated by Kalima Rose, Director of the PolicyLink Center for Infrastructure Equity and leader of PolicyLink’s Sustainable Communities work. Download materials from the webinar at the links below:

Want to know about webinars like this one before they happen? Join the Sustainable Communities Network, an online community of state and local government officials, business leaders and non-profit professionals interested in the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. The Network provides opportunities to ask questions, learn best practices and share ideas with others from around the country. The Network also shares updates about federal initiatives, upcoming events, webinars and conferences to support vibrant, sustainable communities. Click here to subscribe.

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