Providing Well-Placed Affordable Housing in Rural Communities

​The cost of living in rural areas is generally lower than in metro areas, yet many residents of rural cities and towns nevertheless struggle to afford the homes and apartments available in those markets. Furthermore, newly added affordable housing that is built is often located far from jobs, hospitals, grocery stores and schools creating high transportation costs and hardship particularly given that many of these households do not have reliable access to transportation. This toolkit from Smart Growth America examines... Read more

Cycling Success: 10 U.S. Cities Pushing Biking Forward

​ When it comes to designing cities for cycling, the United States lags behind other countries. The U.S. boasts 4 million miles of roads, but fewer than 200 miles of protected bike lanes. But while our car-friendly country may have plenty of ground to make up, there has still been progress. In 43 of our 70 largest cities, cycling rates are rising, and a number of ambitious plans show cities embracing the health, environmental, and social benefits of cycling. These... Read more

Tampa Dreams of Turning Novelty Streetcar Into Transit Solution

​ With the Tampa Bay region stalled on meaningful public transit investment, the city of Tampa is asking residents whether expanding an existing tourist-centric streetcar might help alleviate their transportation woes. Currently, the novelty line runs 2.7 miles, a short stretch that doesn’t reach downtown’s highest job concentrations and runs infrequently. Now, with $1 million from the Florida DOT, and another $677,390 from the city’s own coffers, Tampa is considering what an expanded streetcar system might look like, and engaging... Read more

Memphis Bike Share Will Be Private, Nonprofit, and Community-Led

​When local companies, organizations, and community-members in Memphis found out that getting a publicly-driven bike share system would be a no-go, they didn’t give up. In fact, they decided to take matters into their own hands. The result of the collaboration is Explore Bike Share, which is setting up for its big launch later this year with 60 stations and 600 bikes. Read more... Read more

Transit is Made for Walking

​ Walkability is one of the keys to high transit ridership, and yet much of the nation’s transit is located in low density, unwalkable places. As a result, the U.S. transit industry faces the need to create “first and last mile” connections to and from transit. Why is walking access to transit important? The easier it is for people to walk to public transportation, the more likely they are to use it. Read more... Read more

Seattle’s Transportation Transformation

​ For people using mass transit, new services in Seattle have come in quick succession. The city’s first modern streetcar opened in 2007. Light-rail service began operating in 2009, and the first RapidRide route started service in 2010. In 2016 alone, a second streetcar line was launched, and three additional light-rail stations opened, increasing ridership by 75 percent. Seattle residents have voted to tax themselves for urban transportation three times over the past three years. The virtuous circle, however, really... Read more

How Urban Transportation And Planning Unlock The Future Of Accessibility

​Sitting in traffic is a waste of drivers’ time and money, and it contributes to air pollution. So what’s to be done? Start designing cities for people, not cars. Urban planners can ensure accessibility through mixed-use development, or by connecting neighborhoods through a rich provision of non-motorized mobility options, like bike paths or high-quality public transportation. Read more... Read more
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