More on the White House and Zoning

More on the White House and Zoning

The Housing Development Tool Kit released this week by the White House has some great ideas every city should implement. It also has some things that should stay in the ivory tower.

Last chance to submit to our infrastructure contest

Last chance to submit to our infrastructure contest

Here's a pop quiz:

Which project is more likely to have a higher return on investment and make your town stronger?

a. $2 million to expand a road from two lanes in each direction to three.

b. $2,000 to restripe a street to include bike lanes, build a community garden, or create DIY curb bump-outs to #SlowtheCars

If you answered A, maybe you should spend a little more time reading Strong Towns' work.

If you answered B, you should submit to our Strongest Infrastructure Project contest. We've received dozens of submissions so far, but we'd love more. We want a wide representation of the wonderful small-scale initiatives happening all over the country.  Submissions are due by Friday, September 30.

THE CONTEST

You’re invited to nominate a project from your town (or a town you’re familiar with) that exemplifies Strong Towns principles including:

  • local decision-making and public input
  • bottom-up rather than top-down action
  • project design that’s built to adapt or change incrementally
  • utilizing existing resources, land and infrastructure instead of building from scratch
  • true return on investment

We’re looking for homegrown, neighborhood-based small bets. For the purposes of this contest, we’re defining an "infrastructure project" as any community investment (public or private) that interacts with the public realm and improves the neighborhood in some way. This is part of our ongoing conversation on infrastructure and debt in America.

Once we receive these submissions, we’ll review them as a staff and select the best ones for publication on our website. Then you, our readers and listeners, will get a chance to vote for whichever one that you think most exemplifies Strong Towns principles.

Read contest rules and guidelines, and see project examples here.

(Top photo of Aki's Breadhaus kitchen, a cooperatively-funded neighborhood development)

How Local Cronyism Hurts America's Cities

How Local Cronyism Hurts America's Cities

American towns and states are subsidizing big businesses to the tune of billions of dollars a year. In exchange, we get crappy, big box developments and infrastructure we can't pay afford. 

Conversation with the Economics Detective

Conversation with the Economics Detective

URBAN DEVELOPMENT, THE GROWTH PONZI SCHEME, AND STRONG TOWNS WITH CHUCK MAROHN

A fun and wide ranging interview with the Founder and President of Strong Towns, Chuck Marohn. They talk about the Growth Ponzi Scheme, Big Box Stores, Stroads and more. 

The Economics Detective is a fun podcast that Strong Towns listeners would certainly enjoy. They've featured some of our friends including a conversation with Nolan Gray of Market Urbanism on trailer parks.

You can subscribe to Economics Detective Radio on iTunes or Stitcher and follow them on Facebook or Twitter.


The Week Ahead

The Week Ahead

Some solo podcasting from Chuck this week on the Week Ahead as Rachel takes some (well deserved) time off. A review of recent events, some book recommendations and a teaser announcement.

POTUS: Zoning Sucks

POTUS: Zoning Sucks

The White House takes aim at some of the our cities' worst development practices.

Debate Live-Chat on September 26

Debate Live-Chat on September 26

On Monday, September 26, Sec. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will begin the first of their four presidential debates. We'll be live-chatting throughout the event to analyze their #InfrastructureCrisis comments and anything else Strong Towns-related.

A town where every child can walk to school

A town where every child can walk to school

Lakewood, OH is a "walking school district." The town has never, in its history, owned schoolbuses, so streets are designed to ensure that every child can walk or bike to school.

Slowing the Cars in St. Louis

Slowing the Cars in St. Louis

Watch how a simple and cheap traffic-calming project made a big impact on neighborhood safety and productivity.

The Well Tempered City

The Well Tempered City

A well tempered city—as explained in the book by the same name—is one where all of the components work in harmony as part of the greater composition of a city.