How the transportation decisionmaking process can support more livable community outcomes
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) sponsored five one day Regional Livability Workshops as a part of its Strategies for Livable Communities project. The project goal is to raise awareness of transportation linkages to livability, and to provide resources to practitioners and the public to more effectively consider livability issues within the Federal transportation planning process.
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Secretary LaHood Speaks to National Bike Summit and releases US DOT Bicycle/Pedestrian Policy Statement
Secretaries Tour Livable Communities
The two Secretaries and Administrator visited three excellent examples of livable communities that are making an impact in their region: Chicago, Illinois, Dubuque, Iowa, and Denver, Colorado.
- In Chicago, West Garfield Park was struggling and slated to lose its lone transit rail stop due to low ridership. Through the leadership of Bethel New Life and the Chicago Transit Authority, transit service was maintained and upgraded. The heart of the redevelopment is the $4.5 million Bethel Center, a 23,000 sq. ft., two-story building built on a former brownfield. The building features green construction techniques and has applied for LEED Gold certification. In addition to the Center, Bethel also built 50 affordable homes within walking distance of the Center and the Green Line station.
- In its Historic Millwork District, the city of Dubuque is redeveloping the old factories and mills to create new mixed income housing, workplaces and entertainment. Sustainable transportation options are important to this plan. The city's trolley bus now connects the District to downtown. The District plan includes provisions for redesigning the roadways to support bikes and pedestrians. Many of the buildings are being redeveloped with green building techniques. This district contains many contaminated properties that will be remediated and is largely low-income.
- Denver's La Alma / Lincoln Park is a predominantly Latino neighborhood, also one of Denver's oldest, with an estimated 7,000 residents. The 10th and Osage station adjoins an industrial area, a diverse existing housing stock, and an emerging cultural. The station is serving as a catalyst for Lincoln Park's redevelopment. The plan calls for mixed-use, mixed-income development within walking distance of the station. This will create a more dense and walkable community and create better connections from the La Alma/Lincoln Park neighborhood and the Arts District to the station.
Executive Order (EO) 13514 (Federal Leadership In Environmental, Energy & Economic Performance)
- The goal of President Obama's Executive Order is to improve the overall sustainability of federal government facilities. The EO includes requirements for setting greenhouse gas reduction targets, reducing waste, encouraging community planning and creating high performance buildings, among other measures. DOT with support from EPA HUD and the General Services Administration is leading the effort to create standards for locating new federal facilities in sustainable communities.
EPA's Smart Growth Implementation Assistance Program
- HUD and DOT will participate in EPA's annual technical assistance projects. The Smart Growth Implementation Assistance program is helping communities find solutions to development related challenges in the state of California, Louisville, KY, Las Cruces, NM and Montgomery County, MD. HUD and DOT will continue to work with EPA with the selection of the 2010 Smart Growth Implementation Assistance awardees.
Work is progressing on the Livability In Transportation Best Practice Guidebook
- FHWA is developing a Livability in Transportation Best Practices Guidebook. The objective of the guidebook is to develop case studies and provide strategies, processes and applications to highlight projects that have been implemented to promote livability.
Livability strategic Initiative
- FHWA's Office of Planning is moving towards implementing a livability research project that has been identified as a part of the agency's strategic initiative priorities for R&T Flexible funds. The objective of the project is to develop tools that can support and develop strategies to incorporate and promote livable communities. The project includes the development of a white paper that will describe livability, conduct livability workshops in various locations throughout the country to assist State and local governments and Federal agencies in improving coordination and identifying tools that are needed to further livability; the development of a toolbox of training materials on livability; the development of a regional comprehensive livability plan that can be used by rural and urban areas to address livability in their region in anticipation of the upcoming transportation reauthorization and the development and implementation of a marketing plan that would support the promotion of the aforementioned tasks.