Grow Smart Rhode Island
Smart Growth e-Briefs
News and Tools for People Shaping Our Communities July 2004

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Grow Smart Board of Directors

Michael F. Ryan

Chairman of the Board

Susan Arnold
William Baldwin
S. James Busam
Joseph Caffey
Robert L. Carothers
Arnold Chace
Jen Cookke
Trudy Coxe
Peter Damon
Louise Durfee
Stephen J. Farrell
Thomas E. Freeman
J. Joseph Garrahy
John R. Gowell, Jr.
Stephen Hamblett
Robert Harding
Michael S. Hudner
Stanley J. Kanter
Howard M. Kilguss
Thomas A. Lawson
Dennis Langley
James Leach
Frederick Lippitt
Roger Mandle
Rev. James C. Miller
Thomas V. Moses
George Nee
B. Michael Rauh, Jr.
Gary Sasse
Richard Schartner
Deming Sherman
Merrill Sherman
Curt Spalding
James F. Twaddell
Ranne Warner
Sandra Whitehouse
Frederick C. Williamson
W. Edward Wood

Board Listing with Affilliation


Scott Wolf

Executive Director

Sheila Brush

Director of Programs

John Flaherty

Director of Research & Communications

Lynn Burns

Office Manager

Dorothy Dauray

Office Assistant

Linsey Cameron

Research Assistant

Dear John,

You're among the 1,985 opinion leaders, state & local officials, development professionals, journalists and visionary citizens getting the latest news, happenings and trends in the smart growth movement from Grow Smart Rhode Island.

  • Historic Tax Credits Saved.....for now
  • Following a flurry of late session advocacy spearheaded by Grow Smart and its allies, legislators dropped plans to impose a one-year moratorium on the state's Commercial Historic Tax Credit program. Observers warn, however, that lawmakers may take the issue up again when they reconvene in January.

    Grow Smart believes the program has been a major catalyst for economic and community development that discourages sprawl by promoting revitalization and investment where infrastructure already exists - in our city, town and village centers. To help elected officials and other community leaders fully understand how the tax credit's benefits compare to its costs, Grow Smart has commissioned an independent study by Joe Cronyn, a Maryland based real estate economist with the firm of Lipman, Frizell and Mitchell.

    - Read the Story in Providence Business News

  • Smart Growth Movement Bolstered by Several General Assembly Actions
  • Bills and or significant bond proposals relating to smart growth in the following categories were acted upon in the final days of the 2004 General Assembly. Click on the links below to learn more about what happened.

    Housing Reform

    Brownfields Reform

    Property Tax Reform

    Open Space Recreation, Bay and Watershed Bond Referendum


  • Understanding The New Housing Reform Law
  • In a noteworthy demonstration of the effectiveness of collaboration, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Housing and Municipal Government and the House Corporations Committee produced housing legislation in the 2004 session that balances the concerns of multiple interests. The legislation, which was developed through a four-month process that included several public fact-finding meetings and multiple hearings and revisions, was passed in the Senate and the House on June 24th and immediately transmitted to the Governor. It calls for the state to develop a comprehensive statewide strategic plan to increase housing production and reforms the Low and Moderate Income Housing Act.

    View Our Summary of This Bill's Provisions

  • The State of Smart Growth
  • The State of Smart Growth is the theme for the Summer 2004 issue of On Common Ground, a twice yearly publication from the National Association of Realtors. Topics in this issue include:

    • Measuring Today's Smart Growth Success
    • The Long Road to Smart Growth
    • Smart Codes Smart Places
    • How Do You Know If It's Smart Growth?
    • Smart Growth Fuels Vibrant Urban Villages

    Read These and Other Articles

  • Blackstone Valley Celebrates National Recognition
  • First Lady Laura Bush and the Department of the Interior honored 24 communities along the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor June 25, 2004, when Assistant Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett announced the designation of the Nation's newest Preserve America communities.

    Preserve America is a new White House effort to encourage and support community efforts for the preservation and enjoyment of America's priceless cultural and natural heritage.

    Read All About It

  • Grow Smart Will Be Seeking Your Input
  • Now in it's 6th year, Grow Smart is undertaking a strategic planning initiative to determine how best to allocate limited resources in the pursuit of smarter growth for Rhode Island.

    Under the direction of a Strategic Planning Committee, Grow Smart hired Third Sector New England, an accomplished nonprofit consulting firm, to facilitate the planning process that is expected to be completed this fall. As part of the review, we'll be seeking your input through a brief on-line survey in the coming weeks. Please watch for details and plan to participate. Thank you.

  • Calendar
  • Thursday, July 15

    Deadline for Brownfield Grants
    Grants of up to $2 million per project are available for redevelopment activites at brownfield sites through the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Brownfields Economic Development Initiative (BEDI) Program. The toal amount available this year is $25.3 million.

    Wednesday, August 4 (8:30a - 1:30p)

    U.S. EPA Land Redevelopment Conference The U.S. EPA and the Kraft Group LLC invite the development community and New England municipalities to participate in a conference on redevelopment opportunities at contaminated properties. The conference is designed to help bridge the information gap separating developers, municipalities and federal/state agencies, and to facilitate partnerships that will result in more properties being reused. Join Grow Smart in reserving a booth. Deadline is July 9th.

    Gillette Stadium

    Foxboro, MA

  • Smart Stuff
  • Charlestown


    South Kingstown



    Rhode Island

  • Coalition for a Unified and Efficient Code
  • Grow Smart has joined a coalition calling for the adoption of a unified and effective building and fire code. The effort, led by the Rhode Island Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, includes design professionals, building owners, contractors and other nonprofit policy advocates. The purpose of the effort is to improve Rhode Island's competitive edge and significantly bolster the local economy while improving public health and safety.

    Learn More About It and Sign onto the Coalition (pdf)

  • Grow Smart on the Hunt for New Office Space
  • The office space that Grow Smart now occupies on South Main Street in Providence will no longer be available beginning September 1st. We are therefore actively seeking alternate space for a staff of six.

    We presently require approximately 1,500 SF of affordable space. Commercial property owners or others interested in helping to identify or propose alternate accommodations are invited to email executive director Scott Wolf.

    :: 401-273-5711
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