Smart Growth America

Smart Growth America Improving Lives by Improving Communities
(21)

Operating as usual

"'We need to stop victim-blaming communities of color for these types of diseases...Where you live determines your healt...
08/23/2020
Residential segregation plays a role in coronavirus disparities, study finds

"'We need to stop victim-blaming communities of color for these types of diseases...Where you live determines your health in the United States…and we need to take immediate action to make sure we reduce these disparities in communities of color.'"

The study examines why counties with predominantly White populations have a lower number of cases than more diverse areas.

Converting urban highways into multimodal boulevards can bring enormous benefits to a community and help undo some of th...
08/22/2020
A federal Highways to Boulevards program is the infrastructure project a healthy and equitable America needs

Converting urban highways into multimodal boulevards can bring enormous benefits to a community and help undo some of the harm caused by their construction.

Mandela Parkway, Oakland, formerly the route of I-880. Credit: Scott Humphrey Policy A federal Highways to Boulevards program is the infrastructure project a healthy and equitable America needs BEN CROWTHER    AUG. 17, 2020 Want to support a federal highways to boulevards program? Si...

"There are significant barriers to replacing even a slim minority of car trips on our roads with e-bike trips—but averag...
08/20/2020
Increasing E-Bike Adoption Just 15 Percent Could Cut Emissions 12 Percent

"There are significant barriers to replacing even a slim minority of car trips on our roads with e-bike trips—but average travel distance isn’t one of them."

A new study shows that just a 15-percent shift to electric bicycles in Portland would cut greenhouse gas emissions by 12 percent.

"Your city's zoning code is like the DNA of your community....If your city is like most North American cities, its DNA i...
08/19/2020
6 Reasons Your City Needs a Form-Based Code — Strong Towns

"Your city's zoning code is like the DNA of your community....If your city is like most North American cities, its DNA is broken."

Your city's zoning code is like the DNA of your community. For most North American cities, that DNA is broken. Here are six reasons form-based code can help put our towns and cities back together again.

"It turns out that reckless driving presents more of a political challenge than a technical one. After spending more tha...
08/14/2020
The Life-Saving Car Technology No One Wants

"It turns out that reckless driving presents more of a political challenge than a technical one. After spending more than a century successfully linking their products to the American ideals of individualism and freedom, automakers have created a formidable obstacle to interventions that stand between drivers’ desires and their machines’ capabilities."

Safety features that would make vehicles far less lethal to pedestrians exist right now. Why aren’t they required?

"I’ve seen a study that refers to density as a 'risk factor' or 'enemy' of people. Another described sprawl as a 'secret...
08/13/2020
When It Comes to Covid-19, Density Doesn’t Kill—Sprawl Does

"I’ve seen a study that refers to density as a 'risk factor' or 'enemy' of people. Another described sprawl as a 'secret weapon' against COVID-19. None of these studies are based on any real evidence."

A new, landmark study challenges assumptions about urban design and pandemics.

Policies and plans are good, but without the political will to make change happen, even the best laid plans will falter....
08/12/2020
Apply today: Champions Institute | Smart Growth America

Policies and plans are good, but without the political will to make change happen, even the best laid plans will falter. That's why we'll be working with the next generation of Complete Streets leaders as part of the Champions Institute.

Smart Growth America (SGA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity are now accepting applications for the Champions Institute, a new initiative for elected officials focused on safe streets and healthy communities. The Champions In...

"The careful reshaping of the sidewalk allowed more kinds of bodies on the street but also into public life. 'When disab...
08/11/2020
The Forgotten History of How Accessible Design Reshaped the Streets

"The careful reshaping of the sidewalk allowed more kinds of bodies on the street but also into public life. 'When disabled people enact politics,' writes disability historian Aimi Hamraie, 'they also design and build new worlds.'"

Curb cuts may seem like an obvious civic good now. But the protracted battle to enact them exposes a design history that focused on a normative “user” of streets.

This report “shows how we can convert our immense loss from COVID-19 and other crises into renewal.”
08/08/2020
Thriving Together: A springboard for equitable recovery & resilience in communities across America - Transportation For America

This report “shows how we can convert our immense loss from COVID-19 and other crises into renewal.”

A new report—Thriving Together—takes a comprehensive look at how "we can convert our immense loss from COVID-19 and other crises into renewal." This report represents the combined efforts of more than 100 people and organizations, including Transportation for America, to create a thoughtful guid...

Streets that have been designed first and foremost for cars can and should be redesigned for people—people walking, roll...
08/07/2020
Cities advance Complete Streets policies | Smart Growth America

Streets that have been designed first and foremost for cars can and should be redesigned for people—people walking, rolling, scooting, biking, driving, or taking transit.

A new report from CityHealth finds that 90 percent of the nation's 40 most populous cities have medal-worthy Complete Streets policies on the books. The report makes a case for building safer streets to improve the overall health of cities, especially in the era of COVID-19.

"The real opportunity today is creating new connections by public transportation and passenger rail that federal funding...
08/05/2020
A Smart Investment to Fuel Economic Growth

"The real opportunity today is creating new connections by public transportation and passenger rail that federal funding has long neglected."

by JOHN ROBERT SMITH An infrastructure plan with a strict focus on repair could help put people back to work while fixing a perpetual source of frustration.

"Maryland’s congressional delegation is asking for an additional $32 billion in coronavirus relief funding for U.S. publ...
08/03/2020
Maryland congressional delegation requests $32 billion more relief funding for U.S. transit systems

"Maryland’s congressional delegation is asking for an additional $32 billion in coronavirus relief funding for U.S. public transit systems—and for a larger share to go to transit systems serving mid-sized cities, such as Baltimore..."

Maryland’s congressional delegation is asking for an additional $32 billion in coronavirus relief funding for U.S. public transit systems — and for a larger share to go to transit systems serving mid-sized cities, such as Baltimore, where people depend heavily on the regional buses and trains.

In a first of its kind study, researchers found that ride-hailing trips tend to replace public transit trips "in more de...
08/01/2020
Does ride-sharing substitute for or complement public transit?

In a first of its kind study, researchers found that ride-hailing trips tend to replace public transit trips "in more developed areas covered by subway lines, while peripheral and suburban areas were dominated by complementary trips. However, they also note that house prices were positively correlated with the substitution rate, highlighting the importance of public transit to less-wealthy populations."

In the Chinese city of Chengdu, one-third of ride-sharing might replace public transit trips.

"Race usually has been a subtext in these conversations [about highway removal]. But in the current climate, advocates s...
07/30/2020
Advocates Rally to Tear Down Highways That Bulldozed Black Neighborhoods

"Race usually has been a subtext in these conversations [about highway removal]. But in the current climate, advocates say it’s time for cities to confront and resolve the racist planning decisions their predecessors made 60 years ago."

The interstate highway system flattened homes and businesses in Black communities.

"Bicycling cannot solve systemic racism in the United States. But systemic racism can’t be fixed without tackling it wit...
07/29/2020
Why We Must Talk About Race When We Talk About Bikes

"Bicycling cannot solve systemic racism in the United States. But systemic racism can’t be fixed without tackling it within bicycling."

Systemic racism can’t be fixed without tackling it within cycling.

"American cities’ insistence on maintaining antiquated zoning and planning policies disconnects communities from economi...
07/28/2020
Coronavirus and the Fragility of Auto-Centric Cities - Rocky Mountain Institute

"American cities’ insistence on maintaining antiquated zoning and planning policies disconnects communities from economic opportunity, worsens public health, and drives up emissions through increased automobile usage."

The coronavirus has exposed the ills of continued automobile-centric urban planning practices that adversely impact equity, health, and the climate. Those of us who are working from home, own an automobile, and can conveniently make grocery runs may overlook the... Read More

"It’s hard to blame British safety experts for wanting to keep American cars off their roadways, considering SUVs’ distu...
07/24/2020
American SUVs are Too Dangerous for UK Roads, UK Safety Experts Say

"It’s hard to blame British safety experts for wanting to keep American cars off their roadways, considering SUVs’ disturbing death toll in our own country."

American SUVs kill so many people on U.S. roads that other countries don’t want them anywhere near their own roads.

"While the report includes brief language on the need to prioritize allocating transportation funds to transit, pedestri...
07/23/2020
Biden/Sanders Unity Task Force report falls short on climate - Transportation For America

"While the report includes brief language on the need to prioritize allocating transportation funds to transit, pedestrian, and bicycle infrastructure, it says nothing about reforming the policies that prioritize car travel and congestion reduction above all else..."

Last week, Joe Biden’s presidential campaign jointly released policy recommendations across a range of issues in partnership with Bernie Sanders supporters through a Unity Task Force. Climate change takes a prominent role in the 110-page report, but the proposal fails to call for the comprehensive...

“Participation processes are broken in two different ways,” said Professor Einstein, who teaches at Boston University. “...
07/21/2020
The Pandemic Has Pushed Aside City Planning Rules. But to Whose Benefit?

“Participation processes are broken in two different ways,” said Professor Einstein, who teaches at Boston University. “They’re weaponized by privileged white people. And then when less privileged communities do try to use them, they’re not as effective as a tool for them.”

As bike lanes and cafes sprout on streets, marginalized residents wonder when their priorities will get attention.

"We need sweeping change to national housing policy, encompassing legislative actions, administrative, management and re...
07/20/2020
National housing policy needs a complete renovation

"We need sweeping change to national housing policy, encompassing legislative actions, administrative, management and regulatory reforms — and, of pivotal importance, a new, bipartisan political will to make these changes."

There are just 7.2 million affordable and available rental homes for the nation’s 11.2 million extremely low-income renters.

"Equating the movement of those with the wealth and privilege to instantly pack their bags [and leave in times of crisis...
07/17/2020
Cities Aren’t Dead, They’re Ready to Be Reborn

"Equating the movement of those with the wealth and privilege to instantly pack their bags [and leave in times of crisis] with the entirety of a city’s population misses the great mass of residents who endure and ensure a city bounces back."

The pandemic may have accelerated migration from urban centers, but neighborhoods are keeping city life alive.

"[Disability] rights are made real not just by kind intentions, social change, and legal principles, important as they a...
07/16/2020
If Accessibility Is Important To You, Tell Your Local Candidates

"[Disability] rights are made real not just by kind intentions, social change, and legal principles, important as they are, but through conscious design implemented in wood and hard concrete."

Realistically, it’s up to disabled voters, and our families, friends, and coworkers to push accessibility into the conversation. We have to ask our local candidates about these things.

"There's all kinds of studies that show that race is still the most potent variable for predicting who gets more than th...
07/15/2020
'The Wrong Complexion For Protection.' How Race Shaped America's Roadways And Cities

"There's all kinds of studies that show that race is still the most potent variable for predicting who gets more than their fair share of the 'nasty stuff,' and who gets more than their fair share of the good stuff." – Prof. Robert Bullard

An expert in urban planning and environmental policy explains how race has played a central role in how cities across America developed — often in ways that hurt minority communities.

"Most developed countries already have effective road systems; they can be maintained, but the economic benefits of expa...
07/14/2020
Opinion | Stop Building More Roads

"Most developed countries already have effective road systems; they can be maintained, but the economic benefits of expansion are marginal and the downsides significant."

There’s a right way to do infrastructure. Why does America get it wrong?

Given the myriad ways that transit is funded around the country, the fiscal impacts of the pandemic will likely be varie...
07/13/2020
Transit will be reeling from COVID-19 for years - Transportation For America

Given the myriad ways that transit is funded around the country, the fiscal impacts of the pandemic will likely be varied and long-lasting.

When cities and states began shutting down in response to COVID-19, the financial impact to transit was swift and immense, but the immediate impacts only tell part of the story. Given the myriad ways that transit is funded around the country, the fiscal impacts of the pandemic will likely be varied....

The suburbs have remained ill-defined despite being home to a majority of Americans.
07/11/2020
How to Tell If You Live in the Suburbs

The suburbs have remained ill-defined despite being home to a majority of Americans.

The U.S. hasn’t had a formal definition for what constitutes a suburb. A new data analysis comes closer to defining America’s most popular neighborhood type.

"The suburbs run on federal subsidies. Without them, America’s suburbs would have to become more financially productive....
07/10/2020
It’s Time to Abolish Single-Family Zoning | The American Conservative

"The suburbs run on federal subsidies. Without them, America’s suburbs would have to become more financially productive." Strong Towns' Charles Marohn makes the conservative case for repealing exclusionary single-family zoning regulations.

Suburbia is built on federal subsidies. Is that conservative?

After five years as the director of the National Complete Streets Coalition, Emiko Atherton is departing Smart Growth Am...
07/09/2020
Announcing the departure of the National Complete Streets Coalition director | Smart Growth America

After five years as the director of the National Complete Streets Coalition, Emiko Atherton is departing Smart Growth America, leaving behind an indelible impact on the push for implementing safer streets that everyone can enjoy.

After five years as the director of the National Complete Streets Coalition, Emiko Atherton is departing Smart Growth America in July after making an indelible impact on the national, state, and local push for implementing safer streets that everyone can enjoy.

"I fear that the COVID-19 pandemic is convenient reasoning to do that which Amtrak, over the past several years, has det...
07/07/2020
Critics Fear Amtrak Is Using Pandemic to Cut Service That Won’t Return

"I fear that the COVID-19 pandemic is convenient reasoning to do that which Amtrak, over the past several years, has determined to do...and that is to dismantle the national system." – John Robert Smith, Transportation for America Chairman

Members of Congress are angry that the rail agency is asking for more money while planning to lay off staff and reduce services. Smaller communities that rely on rail service could be badly hurt.

The U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis released a new legislative blueprint that incorporates many of our...
07/06/2020
New House climate plan endorses Smart Growth America’s holistic recommendations for reducing emissions | Smart Growth America

The U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis released a new legislative blueprint that incorporates many of our recommendations, demonstrating how smart growth is at the core of any potential plan to reduce emissions.

The House Select Committee on Climate Change released a new legislative blueprint this week for tackling the climate crisis that incorporates many of SGA’s recommendations across our programs, demonstrating how smart growth is at the very core of any potential plan to reduce emissions.

Over the next few months, these five jurisdictions will implement artist-led projects to address COVID-19 transportation...
07/01/2020
Artist-led projects to address pandemic-related transportation challenges | Smart Growth America

Over the next few months, these five jurisdictions will implement artist-led projects to address COVID-19 transportation challenges.

Smart Growth America is excited to announce the selection of five jurisdictions to participate in the Arts & Transportation Rapid Response initiative. Over the next few months, these jurisdictions will implement artist-led projects to address COVID-19 transportation challenges.

Address

1152 15th Street NW Suite 450
Washington D.C., DC
20005

Closest metro stations: McPherson Square (Blue/Orange/Silver lines – 6 min walk), Farragut North (Red line – 8 min walk), Mt Vernon Sq/Convention Center (Green/Yellow lines – 15 min walk). Accessible via multiple bus routes

Opening Hours

Monday 09:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(202) 207-3355

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Smart Growth America posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The Business

Send a message to Smart Growth America:

Videos

Nearby government services


Other Public & Government Services in Washington D.C.

Show All

Comments

The City of Kent is working to develop a system of Form Based Codes. It's enlightening to see how other cities have transformed their communities to be more walkable and resilient.
Deep breath, focus, envision out community thriving and surviving COVID 19.
Does anyone know how I can find Male vs Female Pedestrian Fatalities Data for the State of Florida? A recent FDOT Public Records Request has revealed that 130 Pedestrians are killed every year in Florida as a direct result of the misplacement of Wheelchair Curb Cuts. -
Dear Smart Growth America: Please conduct some research on Florida's Unmarked Mid-Block Crosswalks and how they are killing Female Pedestrians. Every year Nationwide about twice as many Male Pedestrians are killed than Female Pedestrians. So I was wondering why there were so many Females being killed in Florida's Mid-Block Crosswalks. A September 2018 Study in the Journal of Traffic and Transportation Engineering shows that Males actually take more attempts to cross in these type of crosswalks. However, more Females are killed because Females cross slower than Males. I think the Government should make our Crosswalks safely accessible to both sexes. Thank you, Jeff Redding Sarasota, Florida Pedestrian Safety Advocate
Dear Smart Growth America: Please consider writing about the dangers of the "Mid-Block Crosswalk". Thank you. https://www.pedestriansmatter.org In memory of Jessica, Lillia, Isabel, Alexis, and Sophia. May they Rest in Peace.
Please share this short video on Social Media if you care anything about Disabled Veterans, Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety, and The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).
For many years the FDOT has been misrepresenting and abusing the ADA. The FDOT is misrepresenting ADA Wheelchair Pass By Standards and is placing Wheelchair Curb Cuts in very dangerous locations. Unfortunately, this ADA Fraud has resulted in several Fatal Pedestrian Accidents. For detailed background information including photos and videos please visit. https://www.pedestriansmatter.org In Memory of Jessica, Lillia, Isabel, and Alexis, Rest in Peace. Sincerely, Jeff Redding Sarasota, FL 941-227-6965 Pedestrian Safety Advocate Lifetime Member, Blinded Veterans of America
Irfana Jetha Noorani on How a Park Can Prevent Cultural Gentrification August 7, 2019 at 1 p.m. Eastern
The dark side of green development–and what cities should do instead Toward a new vision of sustainable development: “just green enough.”
"A 'strong town' is one that is able to take care of and manage its own needs without needing outside assistance."
Things are not looking good for South Florida when it comes to complete streets. #anewlow #wecandobetter #dangerousbydesign
Dear Smart Growth America Members: Please Forward this Post to anyone who cares about Pedestrian Safety, the U.S. Access Board, Congressional Representatives, etc... Thank you. From: Jeff Redding, (Vision Impaired Disabled Veteran and Pedestrian Safety Advocate) To: Whom It May Concern Subj: Local and Nationwide Pedestrian Safety Violations References: A. (FHWA Clear Zone Standards) (see item 6) https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/programadmin/clearzone.cfm B. Safety Effects of Marked Versus Unmarked Crosswalks https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/research/safety/04100/ The first step in Pedestrian Safety should be providing pedestrians (and cyclists) with an unobstructed Right of Way. Below are two examples of how the Department of Transportation ignores established Federal Safety Guidelines and endangers the lives of Pedestrians and Cyclists. Local, State,and Federal are all responsible for the safety of their Citizens and should work together in order to ensure compliance of established Safety Guidelines (and common sense). 1. The DOT misrepresents ADA Wheelchair Pass By Standards in order to place Street Lamp Posts in the middle of sidewalks rather than in the Utility Strip (see Profile Pic). The DOT tells Pedestrians (and News Reporters) that they can place Light Posts anywhere on the sidewalk as long as a Standard Wheel can pass by the Post. This is a fraudulent and absurd misrepresentation of the ADA. As a Disabled Veteran I am very offended the the government would actually claim it is the ADA which gives them the authority to obstruct our Right of Way. Please look at the Photos. Utility Posts should not be in the middle of the sidewalk. What ever happened to Common Sense? Recommendations: Follow the established Federal Safety Guidelines listed in Reference (A). Relocate Utility Posts which violate Federal Clear Zone Safety Standards. Pass a Statue or Law whereas County and State ADA Coordinators are required to have former Education and Training in the ADA. Currently, County and State ADA Coordinators are former Contractors, etc... (This is like the Foxes guarding the Hen House). 2. The DOT places Unmarked Pedestrian Crosswalks on high traffic, high speed, multiple lane roads. As an example in Florida, Bee Ridge Road and (U.S. 41) in Sarasota, and Bayshore Blvd. in Tampa. Placing Unmarked Pedestrian Crosswalks on busy multiple lane roads is like enticing Pedestrians to Jaywalk. Recommendations: 1. When placing Crosswalks follow the established Federal Safety Guidelines listed in Reference (B). Our Right of Ways need Bicycle Lanes, Shoulders, Utility Strips, and Unobstructed Sidewalks. If the County, State, and Federal Government really cared about Pedestrian and Cyclist Safety then they wound not obstruct our Right of Way or place Unmarked Crosswalks in unsafe locations. Sincerely, Jeff Redding Sarasota, Florida