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EPA to Provide Smart Growth Technical Assistance to Van Meter, Iowa

Release Date: 02/03/2012
Contact Information: Ben Washburn, 913-551-7364,

Environmental News


(Kansas City, Kan., Feb. 3, 2012) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that the City of Van Meter, Iowa, will receive technical assistance through the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program. The announcement was made at the New Partners for Smart Growth Conference in San Diego, Calif. The assistance will be delivered during a day-long community workshop to provide the city with ideas for changing local policies and procedures to improve the economy, the environment and quality of life.

EPA awarded Van Meter, Iowa, a Smart Growth Zoning Codes for Small Cities and Rural Communities Workshop. The workshop will allow Van Meter to create a regulatory environment more favorable to expanded employment opportunities and business markets, and to expand its commercial property tax base.

“The Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program allows EPA, in partnership with other federal agencies, to provide technical assistance so communities can realize their vision of a sustainable future,” said Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 Administrator. “I applaud the city of Van Meter for setting an example in sustainability for other communities to follow.”

Across the nation, EPA awarded 56 communities with technical assistance through the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program. Building Blocks is a project of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, involving EPA, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). The interagency collaboration coordinates federal investments in infrastructure, facilities and services to get better results for communities and use taxpayer money more efficiently. The partnership is helping communities across the country create more housing choices, make transportation more efficient and reliable, reinforce existing investments, and support vibrant and healthy neighborhoods that attract businesses.

With assistance from EPA-funded private sector experts, the communities will focus on a specific development tool, such as improving pedestrian access and safety, green infrastructure, or economic and fiscal health assessment. Communities will also learn about other strategies for development that can improve the environment and the economy.

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More information on the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities

More information on the Partnership for Sustainable Communities

More information on the New Partners for Smart Growth conference

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