Grow Smart Rhode Island
Smart Growth e-Briefs
  News and Tools for People Making a Difference November 2003  

This Month

Grow Smart, Partners Recognized for Training Program

Tough Economic Times Reinforce Need for Smarter Growth

Growth Planning Council Takes Up "Growth Centers"

Brownfield News

George Nee Joins Grow Smart Board of Directors

Smart Stuff

Carcieri to Propose Open Space Bond


Help Advance the Smart Growth Movement

Sierra Club Calls for Commission to Study Transit Service

Partner Profile

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
George Nee
B. Michael Rauh, Jr.
Gary Sasse
Richard Schartner
Deming Sherman
Merrill Sherman
Curt Spalding
James F. Twaddell
Sandra Whitehouse
Frederick C. Williamson
W. Edward Wood

Board Listing with Affiliation (pdf)


Scott Wolf
Executive Director

Sheila Brush
Director of Programs

John Flaherty
Director of Research & Communications

Lynn Burns
Office Manager / Executive Assistant

Dorothy Dauray
Office Assistant

Linsey Cameron
Research Assistant

About Us

Grow Smart Rhode Island is a statewide public policy group representing a broad coalition of partners fighting sprawl and promoting innovative policies and programs to revitalize city and town centers, preserve cultural and natural resources and expand economic opportunity throughout Rhode Island.

If you Appreciate our Work....

... please make a contribution. Grow Smart depends on tax-deductible contributions from concerned individuals and organizations to lead the charge for better-managed growth, a strong, sustainable economy, a healthy environment and a just society for all Rhode Islanders. Simply click on the credit card below to make a donation.
Thank you.

Or, download our printed form and mail in

See who else is contributing to Grow Smart (pdf)

What is Smart Growth?

   Dear John,

Welcome to the November issue of "Smart Growth e-Briefs", a monthly update of the latest happenings in the smart growth movement from Grow Smart Rhode Island.

  • Grow Smart, Partners Recognized for Training Program
  •   "Making Good Land Use Decisions", the statewide municipal land use training initiative developed by Grow Smart in conjunction with several partners, has earned a planning award from the Rhode Island Chapter of the American Planning Association.

    As sprawling development patterns threaten Rhode Island's open space, urban vitality and community character, the need for proactive, efficient and effective land use planning has become increasingly critical. Municipal officials and staff have long noted the need for training to better understand the laws and innovative tools that can be used to promote sustainable growth. More (pdf)

  • Tough Economic Times Reinforce Need for Smarter Growth

    Despite conventional wisdom, public policy experts at the independent Brookings Institution agree that now is precisely the time for governments to re-evaluate and reform longstanding, destructive and wasteful policies that encourage more sprawl.

    Research documents that compact growth can be as much as 70 percent less costly for governments (and taxpayers!) than equivalent volumes of scattered growth. It simply costs less to provide and maintain infrastructure (such as streets, schools, flood control or sewers) and often services (such as police or fire protection) for denser neighborhoods than for far-flung, low-density communities.

    Brookings Center for Urban & Metropolitan Policy - Analysis & Commentary
    The Costs of Sprawl & Urban Decay in Rhode Island - Executive Summary (pdf)
    EPA - Creating Great Neighborhoods: Density in Your Community

  • Growth Planning Council Takes Up "Growth Centers"
  •   At its October 29th meeting, the Governor's Growth Planning Council heard presentations from two Rhode Island communities proposing growth center type redevelopment initiatives. This comes as the Council is still considering the best way to implement its proposal for targeting state investments to municipally designated growth centers.

    Burrillville and East Providence officials presented the details of major redevelopment planning efforts now underway with the help of millions of dollars in federal grants. Grow Smart applauds Growth Planning Council Co-Chairs Michael McMahon (RIEDC) and Jan Reitsma (RIDEM) for their leadership of this important policy initiative.

    A "Growth Centers" strategy for Rhode Island
    Governor's Growth Planning Council

  • Brownfield News
  •    What Are Brownfields?

    HUD Awards $29.4 Million in Grants to Help Communities Redevelop Brownfields and to Create Thousands of Jobs.
    Burrillville among list of national recipients with a $910,000 grant to assist in the redevelopment of the Stillwater Mill Complex. Funding was provided through HUD's Brownfields Economic Development Initiative (BEDI). See BEDI Quick Facts.

    EPA Loan Fund, Assessment and Cleanup Grant Applications due by December 4.
    Guidelines for first round applications are now available. Interested parties may also contact Susan Kaplan, Brownfields Coordinator at the RI Economic Development Corporation with any questions or to obtain a copy of a sample completed application. Rhode Island Brownfields website

    MA, PA and MD take lead in actively marketing brownfield sites for redevelopment
    State governments in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Massachusetts are taking advantage of web-based innovations to help drive investment into brownfield sites.
    Massachusetts' Brownfield Jump-Start Program
    Pennsyvania's SiteFinder
    Maryland's Smart Sites

  • George Nee Joins Grow Smart Board of Directors
  •    Rhode Island AFL-CIO Secretary/Treasurer George Nee was unanimously approved as a new member of the Grow Smart Board of Directors at the Board's October 29th meeting. The move reflects Nee's longstanding reputation as a forward thinking community leader and a growing trend nationally of organized labor's support for smart growth.

    Aside from his personal support of smart growth quality of life principles such as compact and mixed-use traditional neighborhood design, Nee has noted that a central objective of the smart growth movement - the rehabilitation of abandonned or neglected properties - can employ more people than greenfield development projects and can contribute substantially to the cultural and historic character of Rhode Island.

    Labor and Smart Growth - A National Perspective (pdf)

  • Smart Stuff

    Each month Grow Smart highlights a sampling of policy developments or other creative smart growth initiatives being implemented or pursued around Rhode Island. Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear from you

    South Kingstown
    1. Council among first to adopt "inclusionary zoning" as key housing strategy
    2. Inclusionary Zoning primer from the National Association of Realtors

    1. Town is first to get housing plan approved by state

    Washington County
    1. Grow Smart Board member Michael Rauh recognized for vision to launch regional planning council (pdf)
    2. Greenspace Project earns Comprehensive Planning Award (pdf)

    1. Sustainable Development in South Providence takes Student Project Planning Award

  • Carcieri to Propose Open Space Bond Vote in 2004

    Governor Carcieri will propose a referendum for an open space bond for the 2004 ballot so "future generations have the opportunity to explore the natural beauty" of Rhode Island. The Governor made these remarks at an October 20, 2003 awards luncheon of the Rhode Island chapter of The Nature Conservancy.

    "Through our state's open space bond funds and through the support of our local partners and organizations, including Champlin Foundations, the Nature Conservancy, and local land trusts, we have preserved over 5,500 acres over the last three years," the Governor said. "This new bond will enable us to build upon the success we've seen.".

    Providence Journal Article - 10/20/2003

  •    November 6
    Housing Task Force Meeting - 3:00 pm
    RI Housing Resources Commission
    William Hall Library - Cranston

    November 8
    World Town Planning Day
    The American Planning Association

    November 17
    Housing Task Force Meeting - 3:00 pm
    RI Housing Resources Commission
    William Hall Library - Cranston

    November 19
    Unique Approaches to Preservation & Conservation - 6:30 - 8:30 pm (FREE)
    Preserve Rhode Island
    The Meeting House at Tiverton Four Corners

    Submit a "December Event" for next month's e-brief

  • Help Advance the Smart Growth Movement in RI

    Grow Smart already reaches more than 3,100 opinion leaders, state and local officials, developers, professionals and citizens connected to land-use management and quality of life issues in Rhode Island. And yet, we know it's critical that we continue engaging more people to affect positive land-use changes in Rhode Island. You can help.

    Just click "Forward Email" in the bottom left corner of this email to easily forward to friends or associates whom you believe have an appreciation for how Rhode Island grows in the years ahead.

    Subscribing is easy and FREE. Our goal is to reach 5,800 Rhode Islanders by December 31, 2004.

  • Sierra Club Calls for Commission to Study Transit Service
    On the heels of RIPTA's announcement that it is facing the biggest service cutbacks in 20 years, the Sierra Club has called on Governor Carcieri to create a Blue Ribbon Commission to look at what Rhode Island needs from a transit service.

    To that end, they are organizing a coalition to advocate for a commission and to look beyond the proposed cuts to examine what is truly needed to sustain a transit service that protects the environment, fosters economic development and serves the needs of Rhode Islanders who rely on public transit.

    The Sierra Club of Rhode Island
    Email the Sierra Club to join the coalition

  • Partner Profile

    Preserve Rhode Island
    As the statewide non-profit for historic preservation, Preserve Rhode Island (PRI) protects Rhode Island's historic structures and unique places for present and future generations. PRI was chartered by the State Legislature in 1956 to be the non-profit force guiding and fostering historic and heritage preservation.

    PRI is a vital resource for information, education, advocacy, technical and financial support for historic homeowners, concerned citizens, legislators and preservationists in Rhode Island. Grow Smart has partnered with PRI and other historic preservation organizations in recent years to help win passage of a progressive State Building Rehab Code as well as a 30% State Commercial Historic Tax Credit, both of which have resulted in increased investment in historic preservation and redevelopment of Rhode Island's existing infrastructure.

    Preserve Rhode Island


    Grow Smart Rhode Island
    345 South Main Street
    Providence RI 02903

    phone: 401-273-5711

    Forward email

    This email was sent to, by Grow Smart Rhode Island.
    Update your profile |Instant removal with SafeUnsubscribe™ | Privacy Policy.

    Powered by
    Constant Contact