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Urban Planning

Right Place, Right Time
Urban Planning

 

Features

Right Place, Right Time

The civic leaders of Macon, Ga. had a revelation recently–an "ah-ha" moment, if you will. The left turn around urban planning is poised to be a transformative factor for the city of 153,000 that sits approximately 85 miles south of Atlanta and regarded as "the Heart of Georgia." In the past, some of Macon's elected leaders have "tended to use an approach that spreads initiatives over wider areas instead of… Read more
Breaking Down Barriers: Goose Island Proposal Is In The Zone
Urban Planning

Breaking Down Barriers: Goose Island Proposal Is In The Zone

A city of Chicago redevelopment is bent on removing manufacturing zoning to open the doors to mixed-use living within a first-time emphasis on residential housing in an area that's been monolithically industrial for decades. Can it be done? In a city that has its share of similar success stories, you could say that what's past is prologue. Since 2001 to 2016, the percentage of commercial-oriented businesses in the Goose Island… Read more
Chicago's Winning 'Alter-Ego'
Urban Planning

Chicago's Winning 'Alter-Ego'

Some may beg to differ, but the city of Chicago needs some love. The sustained and troubling violence engulfing the city for far too long now hasn't relented much. It's produced a large black eye on this Midwestern burgh. It's not the be-all and end-all of what transpires there: The bad news eclipses solid humanitarian actions occurring every day. As you peel back the onion, you find a trove of… Read more
Goats for New Growth: Community Orchard Arises in the Rose City
Urban Planning

 

Departments

Goats for New Growth: Community Orchard Arises in the Rose City

For at least 20 years, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ's) Cleanup program has addressed brownfield sites across the state, often working in partnership with sister state agencies, local governments, non-profits, and community groups. In addition, ODEQ collaborates with the brownfields team at EPA Region 10 in Seattle on a variety of projects, including those funded through an EPA grant to ODEQ. These are called "site-specific assessments," or SSAs,… Read more
Equity Crowdfunding Opens Doors
Urban Planning

 

Features

Equity Crowdfunding Opens Doors

What if the members of a community, from all backgrounds and income brackets, could pool all of their money together to create the community they wanted? Redevelopment leaders in Fairmont, West Va. are looking for ways to answer that question, to find ways for interested stakeholders to invest in projects that will create the community they want to live in—and to make financial returns in the process. Crowdfunding, the method… Read more
Granite Crossing: Big Step In Small Community's Re-growth
Urban Planning

Granite Crossing: Big Step In Small Community's Re-growth

Lithonia, Georgia, is a small community of fewer than 2,000 residents in DeKalb County, 19 miles east of Atlanta. The area is known for its abundance of granite, including nearby Stone Mountain, which is composed largely of a granite rock called Lithonia gneiss. Rock quarries, however, have not been enough to sustain Lithonia's economy. City officials have worked tirelessly to change that. To fulfill a redevelopment vision, Lithonia worked with… Read more
Community Focus: Former Aztec Industries, North Brookfield, Mass.
Urban Planning

Community Focus: Former Aztec Industries, North Brookfield, Mass.

North Brookfield is a small rural community in central Massachusetts. The town has a rich industrial history, but has experienced significant job losses since 2000 and has a higher poverty rate and lower median household income than the county and state. Located in the heart of downtown North Brookfield, the former Aztec Industries site was an eyesore and public health hazard. The site was declared one of the highest priority… Read more
Toledo's 'Economic Heart' Is Beating Once Again
Urban Planning

 

Departments

Toledo's 'Economic Heart' Is Beating Once Again

Toledo has always been an auto town, making car parts ranging from Champion Sparkplugs to Libby-Owens-Ford windshields. Toledo's most iconic auto manufacturing product was the US military Jeep, started by Willys-Overland Co. Ownership passed to Kaiser, then AMC, then Chrysler and now Fiat, as the brand was commercialized. Over the past 40 years the city of Toledo, state of Ohio and the United Auto Workers union have mounted several efforts… Read more
An Upscale Coffee Shop That Doesn’t Jibe with Regular Joe
Urban Planning

 

Features

An Upscale Coffee Shop That Doesn’t Jibe with Regular Joe

We have long chronicled stories at Renewal and Redevelopment about urban gentrification cases of the most visceral kind: Those cases where residents are displaced, banished to start anew in places they do not and have never called home. Gentrification “Lite” is when local residents aren’t forced to leave, but are forced to wake up and smell “new coffee”–and not the java they can afford. Convenience stores peddle affordable coffee as… Read more
Driving Home a New Redevelopment Vision
Urban Planning

Driving Home a New Redevelopment Vision

Hey, owning a car and getting dibs on a permanent underground parking spot at a shiny new condominium is overrated, right? How about an urban redevelopment where everything is available in one place and parking has two chances: nil and void. At these visionary developments, there are point to point connections in place that spur the local economy because everyone walks or takes public transportation, thus enhancing the local commerce.… Read more
City of Chicago Redevelopment Initiatives: Motor Row Study
Urban Planning

City of Chicago Redevelopment Initiatives: Motor Row Study

The city of Chicago has a distinguished urban planning and design history and employs an advanced planning and development department to implement the city’s planning and redevelopment objectives. Chicago has long utilized the state of Illinois’ legislation allowing the creation of tax increment financing districts, or “TIFs, to effectuate these objectives.” TIFs are generally understood to be urban renewal districts that foster redevelopment initiatives through subsidies that rely on future… Read more
Municipal Regulation of Land Cleanup:An Idea Whose Time has Come
Urban Planning

Municipal Regulation of Land Cleanup:An Idea Whose Time has Come

It occurs disproportionately in low income neighborhoods where its damaging impacts are most debilitating, contributing to disinvestment and a downward economic and social spiral. It results in greater exposure to environmental toxins for already disadvantaged citizens. In sum, vacant contaminated land—commonly called brownfields—is a profound but largely unrecognized source of social inequality in our cities today. One central factor is this: environmental remediation is the first step in the revitalization… Read more
From Galvanized Steel to Greensgrow Garden:   An Urban Fairy-Tale With a Green Ending
Urban Planning

 

Columns

From Galvanized Steel to Greensgrow Garden: An Urban Fairy-Tale With a Green Ending

To call Mary Seton-Corboy a “gardener” is like calling Christopher Columbus a “sailor”: an accurate, yet vastly understated job description. Just over 10 years ago, when most saw this trash-strewn property in Philadelphia's Kensington section overgrown with weeds and contaminated with who-knows-what, Corboy saw the perfect location for the green space of her dreams. In 1998, Corboy, a chef at the time, was in search of a plot of land… Read more
Facing the Challenges of Urban Construction: Boston's Brownfields
Urban Planning

Facing the Challenges of Urban Construction: Boston's Brownfields

For many years, construction boomed in Boston. Transportation projects such as the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project, known as the “Big Dig,” and the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) Silverline Transit Line entailed the construction of thousands of feet of tunnels beneath an active, bustling city. New office buildings, healthcare and academic complexes, apartments and condominiums, hotels and mixed-use buildings were erected throughout the city. Because Boston is a dense,… Read more
Urban Redevelopment
Urban Planning

 

Features

Urban Redevelopment

Event: Brownfield Economic Development Initiative funding begins in 1999 supplementing EDI grants and enhancing HUD’s Section 108 Loan Programs and Community Development Block Grants (CDBGs), the first dedicated HUD grant program. Action: Makes HUD think creatively to use existing resources and reapply them toward Brownfields raising awareness of among other federal agencies. Connection: Creates a partnership with EPA and leads to the Federal Partnership of more then 20 agencies. Even… Read more
Sustainable Urban Redevelopment-A Climate-Change Solution
Urban Planning

Sustainable Urban Redevelopment-A Climate-Change Solution

West Coast developer Gerding Edlen Development has set an ambitious five-year corporate objective of building real estate projects that produce more energy than they consume. With the $2.2 billion mixed-use Portland South Waterfront brownfield redevelopment that they are co-developing with Williams and Dame Development, they started with the goal of saving 50 percent energy usage relative to conventional construction. One of the lead buildings in the new district, the Oregon… Read more

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