Our Mission

Grow Smart Rhode Island provides statewide leadership for diverse public and private interests seeking sustainable and equitable economic growth. We promote such growth by advocating for compact development in revitalized urban, town, and village centers balanced with responsible stewardship of our region’s natural assets – farmland, forests, the coastline, and the Bay. We inform leaders, decision makers, and concerned citizens about the many benefits of compact development and asset stewardship and provide research and training on proven smart growth strategies. We convene broad coalitions that advocate policy reforms and specific projects designed to build communities where all people and businesses can thrive.

Our Vision for Rhode Island

If Grow Smart’s vision for Rhode Island is realized . . .

  • Valued, maintained, and invested in our diverse built and natural assets in order to strengthen our economy and provide all Rhode Islanders with the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives in a state with an outstanding urban/rural balance.
  • Revitalized our city, town, and village centers, incorporating historic rehabilitation and complementary new construction, walkable streets, parks, and recreational areas, to make these compact centers thriving places to live and visit, work and establish businesses.
  • Generated a broad range of attractive, healthy, and affordable housing choices that give all Rhode Islanders the chance to live close to where they work.
  • Conserved our natural resources, including farmlands, forests, and our incomparable Narragansett Bay, and strengthened farming, forestry and our marine industries.
  • Established an efficient and integrated transportation system that enables Rhode Islanders to get to jobs, schools, services, and recreational areas easily and affordably while reducing automobile dependence.

Rhode Islanders will have renewed pride in our beautiful state, renewed confidence in its future, and feel empowered to continue taking the bold action necessary to unleash its full potential.


2015 Smart Growth Legislative Wrap
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Smart Growth News

2015 Legislative Wrap Up

Following the November 2014 statewide referenda in which Rhode Island voters approved the most sweeping package of investments in smart growth and community revitalization since Grow Smart’s founding, the 2015 General Assembly continued the momentum.  By enacting a number of promising new initiatives – including Governor Raimondo’s bold economic comeback agenda – and staving off radical […]

June 23rd Open House, Public Meeting for Newport Thames & Spring Streets Streetscape Improvements

June 15, 2015 (Newport, RI) — A public meeting and open house for the Lower Thames and Spring Streets Streetscape Improvements project is taking place at 5:30 – 7:00PM on Tuesday, June 23 at the Edward King House [35 King Street in Newport]. The Lower Thames and Spring Streets Streetscape Improvements project is an open […]

U.S. business trend toward walkable downtowns aligns with RI economic development strategies

Attracting talent, fostering creativity, and building brand among factors favoring downtowns outlined in new national survey WASHINGTON, DC – (June 18, 2015) Hundreds of American companies see unique competitive advantages to being located in a walkable downtown neighborhood. These locations are helping companies attract and retain talented workers, build their brand and corporate identity, support […]

RISBJ: U.S. Business Trend Toward Walkable Downtowns Aligns with RI Economic Development Strategies

Hundreds of American companies see unique competitive advantages to being located in a walkable downtown neighborhood. These locations are helping companies attract and retain talented workers, build their brand and corporate identity, support creative collaboration, be closer to partners, consolidate operations, and support triple-bottom line business outcomes. Scott Wolf, executive director of the nonprofit policy […]

The Valley Breeze: The Design Exchange in Pawtucket recognized for ‘outstanding’ work

Grow Smart Rhode Island recognized The Design Exchange in Pawtucket with an “Outstanding Smart Growth Projects” award at the 2015 Smart Growth Awards on May 21. “Each year, passionate, creative, and resourceful Rhode Islanders show us the way to tap our state’s full potential through projects, plans, and policies that play to Rhode Island’s strengths […]

The Providence Journal: Commit to projects that will draw Millennials to the Ocean State, Oregon congressman tells Grow Smart RI

U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon, a longtime advocate for what he calls “livable communities,” said Friday that he discovered a community here with more potential opportunities than he has seen in any similar community — and he travels a lot, so he’s comparing Providence to about 200 others. It’s time, Blumenauer said, for Providence and […]

Warwick Beacon: Smarth Growth honoring Avedisian for RIPTA leadership

Taking the helm of RIPTA’s board of directors as chairman in 2012, Mayor Avedisian has brought bold leadership and a clear vision for how mass transit can better work for Rhode Islanders and the local economy. “We asked ourselves, ‘how can we make it better?’” he said, adding that RIPTA has an incredible impact on […]