The Clinton-Gore Livability Initiative, "Building Livable Communities for the 21st-Century," helps communities across America grow in ways that ensure a better quality of life and strong, sustainable economic growth. This initiative, launched January 11, 1999, will strengthen the Federal government's role as a partner with the growing number of state and local efforts to build livable communities by encouraging coordination between livability initiatives, improving coordination of existing programs, and reaching out to key constituent groups.
Transportation plays a critical role in the Administration's Livability Initiative. The transportation planning process guides states and metropolitan areas in developing transportation plans and programs to serve residents. Transportation planning links safety concerns, land use development, environmental quality, the needs of disadvantaged populations, and economic development into an integrated approach to community development. This comprehensive effort will help communities use their transportation plans, resources and programs to make decisions resulting in a better quality of life.
While communities know what best meets their needs, the Federal government has tools and resources to help them attain their goals for livability and economic development. The Livability Initiative will help communities use existing Department of Transportation programs more effectively as they seek to improve safety, reduce the growth in congestion, contribute to greater economic prosperity, ease access to jobs, and provide greater accessibility in an environmentally friendly way.
The Transportation and Community and System Preservation Pilot (TCSP) program is a comprehensive initiative of research and grants to investigate the relationships between transportation and community and system preservation and private sector-based initiatives. It is an Federal Highway Administration program with the Federal Transit Administration, the Federal Rail Administration, the Office of the Secretary, and the Research and Special Programs Administration/Volpe Center within the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as program partners. States, local governments, and metropolitan planning organizations are eligible for discretionary grants to plan and implement strategies that improve the efficiency of the transportation system; reduce environmental impacts of transportation; reduce the need for costly future public infrastructure investments; ensure efficient access to jobs, services, and centers of trade; and examine private sector development patterns and investments that support these goals. A total of $120 million is authorized for this program for Fiscal Year 1999-2003.
The Transportation and Community and Systems Preservation Pilot Program Grant Workshop in Denver, Colorado celebrated the successful first year of the TCSP program. The conference brought people together to address transportation, environmental, and land use issues. It also provided an introduction to the TCSP Program itself. There was a wide range of participants, including Federal representatives from the Department of Transportation, Environmental Protection Agency, and Department of Energy; State and local representatives from across the country; private organizations and businesses; and other interested organizations. Participants exchanged a wealth of information on furthering the goals of the TCSP program.
These Conference Proceedings summarize the speeches, presentations, and discussion at the conference, and provide an overview of the workshop activities and accomplishments. The conference began with a round of introductory speeches, which was followed by a plenary session. The conference then adjourned into four concurrent "tracks," repeated to allow participants an opportunity to attend all tracks. Track A, "Best Practices-Presentations of TCSP Projects," allowed the grantees to present their TCSP activities from Fiscal Year 1999. Track B, "Partnering: 'Our Town,' a Dialogue for Livable Communities," discussed ways to ensure community involvement when planning and implementing a project. Track C, "Building the Knowledge Base," provided guidance on how TCSP grant recipients could effectively conduct the required evaluation of their respective activities. Track D, "Leveraging Opportunities," introduced some of the other Federal programs with similar goals to the TCSP program.