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Hartford-Area Leaders, Developers and Citizens to Discuss Sustainable Housing and Mixed-Use Development

Release Date: 05/05/2009
Contact Information: Rosemary Monahan, (617) 918-1087 Danielle Arigoni, (202) 566-2859

(Boston, Mass. – May 5, 2009) – A team of national experts assembled by the U.S. EPA will engage residents, decision-makers and developers from Hartford and the surrounding region to develop strategies to create compact, mixed-use, mixed-income housing that provides residents with better access to jobs and services.

The two-part workshop, supported by EPA’s Smart Growth Program and to be convened by the Capitol Region Council of Governments beginning May 14, will focus on how to implement sustainable approaches to housing and mixed-use development.

The first part of the workshop on “Visualizing Density” will take place from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 14 at the Lyceum, 227 Lawrence Street in Hartford. The second part of the workshop on envisioning development alternatives at three or four potential sites in the Capitol Region will take place from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 16 at the Lyceum in Hartford. All are welcome to attend both events.

Among the experts participating in the workshop are Julie Campoli, author of the book Visualizing Density, and Jonathan Rose, the nationally-recognized planner and developer of the award-winning Highland’s Garden Village project in Denver and the Metro Green project in Stamford. Jonathan Rose Companies has partnered with Wallace, Roberts & Todd, an urban and neighborhood design firm. Together, they are working with EPA and the Capitol Region Council of Governments to establish viable guidelines and strategies to design and develop green, mixed-income neighborhoods in smart growth locations.

Workshop participants will discuss guidelines on how to select and develop appropriate sites for housing and mixed-use development that reduce energy consumption and transportation costs, thereby making housing more affordable and reducing emissions that contribute to climate change. Three sites from across the Capitol Region will be featured as potential locations for this type of approach to development. Participants will be invited to propose ideas and develop conceptual drawings for possible projects on each site that reflect sustainable housing and mixed-use approaches.

“This project represents the convergence of so many issues that are of critical importance to Connecticut’s residents: better energy efficiency in homes, lower housing costs, and greater choices in transportation. It lays a roadmap for towns and cities as they seek to create more housing options for young workers, aging households, and families at all income levels,” said Danielle Arigoni, an EPA Senior Policy Analyst who is leading this project.

The nine-month project began in fall 2008 when the Capitol Region Council of Governments was awarded assistance through EPA’s Smart Growth Implementation Assistance program. The Council of Governments asked EPA to help local communities build more smart growth and green building approaches into their HomeConnecticut planning efforts. Other local partners include the Partnership for Strong Communities, Connecticut’s Office of Planning and Management, University of Hartford’s Center for Integrated Design, the American Farmland Trust, and the municipalities of Tolland, Bloomfield, South Windsor, and Manchester. EPA’s assistance will result not only in potential plans for sites throughout the regions, but also in planning and design guidelines that will be transferrable to localities throughout the state for use in their own housing and/or planning efforts.

A final report that summarizes the guidelines and outcomes from the workshop is expected to be delivered to the local team by August 2009.

More information:

- How to register:
Two-Part Interactive Workshop on Sustainable Development for Capitol Region Municipalities (www.crcog.org/about/regional_conferences.html)

-
EPA’s Smart Growth Implementation Assistance Program (www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/sgia.htm)

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