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Building on Small Towns’ Heart & Soul

February 8, 2013: 

After the residents of Damariscotta, Maine, blocked development of an 187,000-square-foot Walmart in 2006, the town with roughly 2,000 year-round residents was left battered and divided. It also faced a “What now?” dilemma.

Placemaking: A Community’s Appeal Drives Economic Prosperity

February 8, 2013: 

Is a city appealing because it’s prosperous or is it prosperous because it’s appealing?

That may sound like a chicken-or-egg question, but in this case, there’s a right answer — or at least a growing awareness that creating vibrant public spaces is a winning economic strategy.

As a report by the Project for Public Spaces (PPS) points out, place has always mattered. The first cities, after all, emerged because people gathered at crossroads, creating lively hubs to exchange goods and ideas.

A New Path to Economic Development

February 8, 2013: 

There was a time when the term “economic development,” as used by most public officials and business leaders, referred to the practice of luring firms and jobs to a jurisdiction by selling companies on the benefits of that community — such as favorable tax rates — and providing monetary incentives to locate there. Now, communities increasingly are realizing that the quality of the places within the community are playing a larger role in today’s economic decisions.

REALTORS® Take Action: Richmond REALTORS® Use Progressive Thinking to Tackle Sprawl

February 7, 2013: 

The United States Census Bureau’s highly anticipated release of the 2010 data has those with an interest in the housing industry pouring over the data, analyzing demographics, reviewing numbers and scrutinizing the numbers for trends.

The Richmond Association of REALTORS® (RAR) is no exception. The RAR is working with its regional and state partners, as well as some housing nonprofits, to collaborate on any analyses and studies that can help line up housing with needs, said Richmond Association of REALTORS® Chief Executive Officer Laura Lafayette.

REALTORS® Take Action: Ft. Lauderdale REALTORS® Champion the Smart Growth Cause

February 7, 2013: 

“Live, work and play” is the mantra of the smart growth movement. Ft. Lauderdale, with its refreshing Atlantic waters and reputation as a beach and resort area, has no problems living up to the “play” billing.

Completing the trinity, though, is vital for the southeast Florida county. The REALTOR® Association of Greater Ft. Lauderdale (RAGFL) has been using National Association of REALTORS® Smart Growth Action grants to help spread the smart growth word and help sunny South Florida better plan for future growth.

Does the Nation Have Money for Its Infrastructure Challenges?

February 7, 2013: 

By Gary Fineout

In the months following the 2010 elections, three Republican governors scrapped plans for high speed rail lines in their states.

Ohio and Wisconsin rejected their shares of high speed rail funding first, followed by Florida, where the decision by Gov. Rick Scott to reject $2.4 billion for a line linking Tampa to Orlando sparked an outcry from business leaders and politicians from both parties.