Sustainable Cities (Regional Development and Public Policy Series)

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Funded by a unique partnership of federal, state, private, and county investments, the STIP is starting to attract businesses committed to profitability, the environment, and the community. The park will incorporate local enterprises as well as new industry as it tries to create more sustainable products and production practices. The STIP will attempt to demonstrate advanced facilities in resource efficiency and pollution prevention and model symbiotic relationships among industrial processes. STIP's first tenant--a manufacturer of photovoltaic energy equipment--is already in place.

Through many different project activities and its ability to leverage support and resources from many different stakeholders and sources, Northampton County's sustainability effort illustrates how rural communities and small towns can make progress toward sustainability. Seattle, Washington Seattle was one of the first U. As defined by the volunteer civic organization Sustainable Seattle, "sustainability" here refers to the "the long-term social, economic, and environmental health of our community. Since , many new city policies, plans, programs, and redevelopment projects have included sustainability.

For instance, the Seattle Comprehensive Plan hopes to reduce urban sprawl and traffic congestion by increasing the density of jobs, housing, and amenities around "Urban Village" centers while maintaining the unique character of individual neighborhoods. Furthermore, over 30 Seattle neighborhoods are nvolved in the Neighborhood Planning Project, a follow-up project to the Comprehensive Plan.

This project is a two- to four-year planning process to design plans consistent with the city's overall objective of sustainability while also meeting neighborhoods' special needs. Seattle has also been working with industry in its sustainability efforts. For example, Boeing and the City of Seattle have agreed to use waste heat from a new sewer trunk line to provide heat for the company's major assembly facilities, saving on the cost of both heating equipment and fuel.

Seattle is also noted for its ongoing development of sustainability indicators--quality-of-life metrics that reflect economic, ecological, social, and cultural health. For example, the metrics focused on environmental indicators related to wetlands, biodiversity, wild salmon, air quality, pedestrian-friendly streets, open space in Urban Villages, impervious surfaces, and soil erosion. The metrics for population and resources focused on population, pollution prevention and renewable resource use, solid waste generated and recycled, residential water consumption, vehicle miles traveled and fuel consumption, and farm acreage.

Such metrics will be used to evaluate the effectiveness of the various programs and public expenditures toward achieving sustainability. Seattle has built a substantial collaborative process with government and private leadership. The mayor and some members of the city council and King County Council have publicly embraced sustainability. The mayor's Environmental Action Agenda created a more "holistic" management strategy for achieving key environmental priorities defined by community consensus.

This agenda also helped initiate projects to integrate environmental, economic, and social goals. Many grassroots citizens' groups and nonprofit institutions and universities also have helped in Seattle's activities, including researchers and educators at the Northwest Policy Center; the Center for Sustainability Communities Cascadia Community and Environment Institute ; and the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Washington and Seattle University.

Seattle's sustainability program has experienced growing pains and mixed success. Sustainability is especially difficult when it attempts to change individual behaviors, such as trying to decrease single-occupancy vehicle driving and to solve related urban sprawl issues. Seattle found that "many new programs and policies that would have the effect of promoting more sustainable behavior in the region have met with stiff opposition. Often, the object at the center of the conflict is the private automobile. Seattle learned from experience and continues to try to evolve toward sustainability, recognizing that becoming more sustainable is often a slow and incremental process.

Many of Seattle's most successful sustainability projects have been decentralized, grassroots efforts. For instance, city- and county-sponsored programs have successfully trained and deployed volunteers throughout the region to help teach individuals about more sustainable practices. EcoVillage at Ithaca, New York EcoVillage at Ithaca, New York, is another type of sustainable community initiative where members are trying to develop a new community from the ground up.

Sustainable Cities: 1st Edition (Paperback) - Routledge

The group's goal is to create a model community of about residents that will exemplify sustainable systems of living. Its completed project is supposed to be a working demonstration of a community that meets basic human needs such as shelter, food production, energy, social interaction, work, and recreation while preserving natural ecosystems.

With the help of donations and loans, the group purchased a acre site less than two miles from downtown Ithaca. Through an envisioning retreat in and four land-use planning forums during and , members of EcoVillage at Ithaca developed comprehensive plans for their new community. The process of developing the project included input from over people including future residents, architects, landscape architects, students, professors, planners, ecologists, and energy experts.

The group formed a plan to build five neighborhoods around a village green, while preserving at least 80 percent of the land as agricultural open space, woods, and wetlands. EcoVillage at Ithaca's plan includes an integrated strategy for addressing issues such as transportation, land use, energy, water, waste water, solid wastes, agriculture, cultural and ethnic diversity, recreation, natural resources, building materials, education, research, and residential neighborhoods. For instance, the village is building a pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use multifamily development on less than 20 percent of the land while using most of the rest of the land for agriculture and natural areas.

State-of-the-art permaculture techniques, including orcharding, agroforestry, and aquaculture, will be implemented to maximize the self-sufficiency of the village. Other plans include an on-site wastewater treatment via a natural marsh system, gray water recycling, and composting. To be highly energy-efficient, houses are being built with super-insulated passive-solar designs and shared hot water heating systems.

A visitor center will be constructed, which will also support education and research activities. The program has already developed educational programs in ecology and agriculture for local youth. A group of residents formed the EcoVillage CoHousing Cooperative, a separate legal entity that is creating cohousing neighborhoods on EcoVillage's land based on the Danish CoHousing model. Private, self-contained homes are being built in clusters around shared spaces, including a pedestrian path and a common house.

The common house may include optional shared space such as a kitchen, dining room, laundry facility, workshops, guest rooms, and children and exercise areas. The first neighborhood was to have been built by the end of and was to include 15 duplexes clustered around a pedestrian courtyard. In developing this project, the EcoVillage CoHousing Cooperative had to overcome some challenging zoning regulations. This example demonstrates how a small city with a grassroots effort can start to build a new village within the city to create a model for sustainable living.

However, the Presidio is a unique national park. Besides preserving and interpreting history and protecting the environment for millions of visitors to enjoy every year, this park is also trying to become a center for sustainability. The Presidio is developing and implementing projects to demonstrate more sustainable practices. Teaching about sustainability and transferring its sustainable practices to other communities are major goals of this initiative.

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The Presidio is developing special educational projects, such as special visitors' tours of Presidio grounds and sustainability projects, to teach visitors about sustainability. Over people, including architects, environmental consultants, engineers, exhibit designers, members of the neighboring community, developers, students, and NPS personnel, spent three days developing demonstration projects. Their goal was to create a sense of community and to develop plans for specific sustainability projects at the Presidio.

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This community's members include federal and local government, private businesses, NGOs, and private citizens. The demonstration projects were organized by six focus areas, with a team of volunteers working in each area before and after the charrette.

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The focus areas were:. The park has many historic buildings, which are being rebuilt and thus pose special challenges because of their historic status. The two building rehabilitation teams have been designing special demonstration projects for rehabilitating historic buildings.

These projects will be economical for the tenants, more resource-efficient and energy-efficient, and educational for the public. The total site team helped facilitate a process for creating a sense of community for the various stakeholders involved with the Presidio.

These stakeholders include workers, residents, neighbors, visitors, recreational users, and interested members of the general public. This community also includes private businesses, such as Burger King and golf course managers, NPS personnel, and military personnel and families who still live at the park.

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Other community members include NGOs that are tenants on the Presidio, such as the Tides Foundation, and those who have a special interest in it, such as local Sierra Club members. The Minor is a 27 credit-hour program. Students who complete the minor will understand the foundations of sustainability, including the 3 E's of environment, economies and equity as these domains of learning apply to the urban and built environment.

In addition, students will develop literacy in the applications of these concepts to specific fields of urban planning and community development, including land use, transportation, urban environmental management, natural resource conservation and urban ecology.

Students with an interest in the minor should speak with their academic advisor and review the minor in Sustainable Urban Development curriculum. PSU's Donald Truxillo asks: Can organizations reduce fuel consumption by encouraging employees driving fleet vehicles to follow simple guidelines whil. Utility Navigation Quick Menu I want to Search Portland State Enter the terms you wish to search for.

Sustainable Urban Development Minor. Admission Requirements Students with an interest in the minor should speak with their academic advisor and review the minor in Sustainable Urban Development curriculum. I Want To Find a Graduate Program. Find Scholarships. Connect with an Advisor. Map My Courses. Recently Admitted to PSU?