Thanks for your interest in hosting a Strong Towns event. If you haven't done so yet, please visit this page to get started planning your event with our Pathfinder, Michelle Erfurt. Below, you'll find information about our event process, resources, and different presentation options.
What to expect
After you schedule a Strong Towns event, our staff will be in touch with you to help prepare. You can expect the following:
- Rachel Quednau will contact you about advertising and promoting the event. Please fill out this short form so we know how you prefer to proceed with marketing efforts for your event.
- Michelle Erfurt will continue to work with you to finalize event details.
- The event will be listed on our Event page.
- We will feature the event on our website, podcast and/or social media to help promote the work you are doing.
- We will contact our members and supporters in the area via email and invite them to attend the event if it's open to the public.
Resources for Your Event
Click on the items below to download.
- Biography of Charles Marohn
- Strong Towns logo, headshots and promotional photos
- Tips for Funding a Strong Towns Visit
Additional support we can provide
- Press releases, interviews, and op-eds for your local paper. Contact Rachel Quednau at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in this.
- Follow-up events in your area or region. Contact Michelle Erfurt at email@example.com if you are interested in this.
Click on the titles below to learn more about each presentation and get a description of the topics covered.
+ Curbside Chat
In the Curbside Chat, Charles Marohn explains, in plain language, how so many American cities have found themselves in decline after decades of “growth.” The problem lies in the current model of development — one which values short-term gains over long-term prosperity. To strengthen our cities and ensure their economic success, we must look to traditional ways of building cities. In this presentation, Marohn will explain how active citizens, local officials and design professionals can change the negative trajectory in their towns and help them to become more resilient — no matter what challenges lie ahead.
This core Strong Towns presentation is a game-changer for communities looking to grow more resilient in an uncertain future.
+ Transportation in the Next American City
For more than six decades, local governments have been accustomed to building new transportation infrastructure, expanding existing systems in addition to constructing completely new facilities. While liabilities have grown, transportation funding has not kept up. Now there is a desperate need for local governments to shift from building to maintaining, from an approach that emphasizes expansion to one where we mature our use of existing investments. In difficult economic times, this is a scary, but necessary, realignment.
A Transportation in the Next American City presentation brings your community into the national conversation about transportation spending and will help local decision-makers determine where to spend precious transportation dollars to get the best return on your investment.
+ Neighborhoods First
Risky, low returning projects too often become expensive boondoggles that haunt a community for decades. Public officials everywhere are desperately seeking an alternative. This talk will cover the "Neighborhoods First" approach to show how a community can grow stronger by making small, incremental investments over time. By observing how neighbors live their lives, by asking them where their daily struggles are, by getting out on the street and discovering what is actually going on, any local government can discern what their community’s pressing needs are. These projects are the high return investments and they are all around us.
A portfolio of incremental projects, each building on observed needs and past successes, is the basis of a solid, long term investment strategy for communities of any size. It is an approach that fits into every budget. It will empower a local government to move beyond the lack of ownership and control that comes with traditional grant programs. And most importantly, you can get started right now.
A Neighborhoods First presentation will demonstrate how to take less risk and grow financially stronger, all while directly serving the people already living and working in your city.
+ Infrastructure Crisis
For more than six decades, local governments have been accustomed to building infrastructure and expanding existing systems. While liabilities have grown, transportation funding has not kept up. Now there is a desperate need for local governments to change their approach. We need to shift our strategy from an emphasis on continuous expansion to a more mature focus on maintenance and maximization of existing infrastructure. In difficult economic times, this is a scary, but necessary, realignment.
There are trillions of dollars of unproductive infrastructure already in the ground today waiting for us to make better use of. At Strong Towns, we see that our cities, towns and neighborhoods are dripping with opportunity. These opportunities are not of the mega-project variety. They are small -- seemingly beneath us, perhaps -- but they can positively transform everything about how we live our lives.
An infrastructure presentation brings your community into the national conversation about infrastructure spending and will help local decision-makers determine where to spend precious infrastructure dollars to get the best return on your investment.
+ Gross Negligence
On a daily basis, we hear about people killed in car crashes. The deaths of pedestrians and children are particularly troubling, and yet these "accidents" keep happening. The solutions typically employed by our cities and state departments of transportation include lowering speed limits, installing crosswalks and erecting barriers, but none of these actions are truly solving the problem.
The people who design our streets have been grossly negligent. We need a radical rethinking of the way we address pedestrian safety issues—one that will make streets safer for everyone and make our towns more economically productive in the process.
A Gross Negligence presentation shines a vital light on pedestrian safety issues and presents real, long-term solutions for our dangerously designed streets.
+ Walking Tour
During this event, attendees will learn Strong Towns principles as they apply to their immediate area. Participants discover how to view their neighborhood through the Strong Towns perspective while identifying current challenges and discussing possible solutions to their built environment. The walking tour is a way for attendees to see the bridge between topics shared in our Curbside Chat lecture in the local context.