DMB and the USGBC-AZ host a Community Conversation with world-renowned urban planner, Peter Calthorpe

November 12, 2009 – On Thursday, the Arizona Science Center was filled with planning, transportation and development leaders from around the West to participate in a “Community Conversation” about the changing development environment in which cities and corporations now must operate.

Renowned urban planner, Peter Calthorpe is leading Vision California, an unprecedented effort funded by the California High Speed Rail Authority to explore the critical role of land use and transportation investments in meeting the environmental and fiscal challenges facing the state over the coming decades. Vision California will develop new modeling and analysis tools for government and development leaders to quantify the critical role of land use, coordinated transportation investments, infrastructure enhancements, and other factors in meeting the objectives of regional air quality, water conservation and environmental protection.

Redwood City Saltworks – A Model for the Future
The 2.2 square mile Redwood City Saltworks site provides an extraordinary and unique opportunity to balance environmental and housing needs in the Bay Area. It is rare to be presented with a redevelopment project that has the ability to become the Smart Growth model of scale, meeting the new environmental objectives approved in California Senate Bill 375 (SB375) and Assembly Bill (AB 32). These pieces of legislation require planners and developers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by discouraging sprawl development and dependence on car travel. They encourage integrated land use, compact development that leverages regional and local transportation to create more livable communities for the future.

The Saltworks 50/50 Balanced Plan comprehensively puts forth an innovative, Smart Growth plan consistent with these legislative mandates. For three years, the Saltworks team engaged in a community outreach process to help understand the local community’s priorities for this vast site. Their input underscored the need for a Smart Growth plan that would concentrate growth near existing jobs and transportation networks to avoid sprawl and conserve open spaces. True to DMB’s legacy of environmental stewardship, the plan allocates 50 percent of the site for habitat creation, recreation and open space. The balance of the site will create a mix of housing and community uses, focused on connecting existing jobs with housing to realize a more compact, more livable community. The 50/50 Balanced plan incorporates sustainable community development practices with jobs/housing and transportation solutions designed to meet the future needs of Redwood City and the Peninsula. This 50/50 Balanced Plan represents one of the most comprehensive and thoughtful planning approaches of scale in the West. Today, Saltworks has the opportunity to become a model for sustainability and Smart Growth.

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Jill Hegardt

Vice President

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