Grow Smart Rhode Island
Smart Growth e-Briefs
  Monthly Briefs from Grow Smart Rhode Island September 2003  

This Month

Meet the Grow Smart Board of Directors

Study Links Sprawl with Obesity, Chronic Disease

Legislative Wrap-up

Smart Growth to be Topic at Leadership B.V.

Local Milk Campaign Aims to Save R.I. Farmland

Land-Use Planning Images Available

Upcoming Conferences of Interest

Meet the Grow Smart Board of Directors

Michael F. Ryan
Chairman of the Board

Susan Arnold
William Baldwin
S. James Busam
Joseph Caffey
Robert L. Corothers
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
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

The Advisory Council

Grow Smart's Advisory Council has played a major role in building cohesive private/public partnerships for specific smart growth efforts. The Council meets approximately six times a year and helps the Grow Smart staff and Board research key issues and develop policy proposals and initiatives. It includes representatives from federal, state and municipal governments, corporations, community development groups and the environmental, historic preservation, higher education and planning communities.

Advisory Council Listing

   Dear John,

Welcome to the September issue of "Smart Growth e- Briefs", a monthly update of the latest happenings in the smart growth movement.

Grow Smart Rhode Island is a statewide public interest 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.

  • Study Links Sprawl with Obesity, Chronic Disease
  •   A new study examing the impact of sprawling development on health is the first national report to find a clear association between where people live and their weight, activity levels and likelihood of suffering from hypertension.

    In Rhode Island, Washington County was found to have the highest degree of sprawl and resulting health risks among the four RI counties analyzed while Providence County was the most compact, according to the research which was based on health data collected from more than 200,000 residents of 448 counties in major metropolitan areas across the U.S.

    Grow Smart reaffirms its position that Rhode Island needs to develop public policies that make it more feasible for developers to invest in traditional neighborhoods where people can walk to nearby stores, services, recreation facilities and jobs. It's one of the reasons why Grow Smart strongly supports the policy initiative of Growth Centers, a concept in which municipalities designate parts of their communities for traditional compact, mixed-use development that is encouraged through targeted allocation of state resources.

    View the Full Report

  • Legislative Wrap-up

    What passed and what didn't in the 2003 legislative session? Grow Smart has compiled an inventory showing the fate of several bills that have implications for the smart growth movement in Rhode Island.

    Although not a complete tracking of every such bill, these links provide an overview of major smart growth legislative initiatives in the following categories:

    Brownfields Redevelopment
    Urban Infrastructure
    Affordable Housing
    Historic Preservation
    Open Space Protection
    Economic Development

  • Smart Growth to be Topic at Leadership B.V.
  •   Grow Smart staffers Sheila Brush and John Flaherty will lead a smart growth workshop as part of the 2003- 2004 curriculum of Leadership Blackstone Valley (LBV). LBV is an intensive, hands-on program to cultivate a network of emerging community leaders that can be a voice in advocating for the Blackstone River Valley towns of Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

    The eight-week program beginning October 9 is a collaborative initiative between the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission, The Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Northern Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce.

    About Leadership Blackstone Valley

  • Local Milk Campaign Aims to Save R.I. Farmland
  •   In 1977, Rhode Island boasted 102 diary farms. Today they number just 22 with many of the closed farms permantly lost to development and sprawling sub- divisions.

    In an effort to reverse the trend, a group of local farmers have formed the Rhode Island Dairy Farm Co-op and are working to market and sell a local brand of milk called Proud Cow. The initiative got its start with a $20,000 farm viability grant through the State Division of Agriculture.

    Read the Article in Providence Business News

  • Land-Use Planning Images Available
  •    Need an image of mixed-use developments, traffic calming devices, new urban development, revitalization, suburbs and sprawl or examples of smart growth schools?

    The Pedestrian and Bicycycle Information Center (PBIC) and Smart Growth America offer on-line image libraries. Use of the images is FREE for non-commercial purposes. Just review their usage guidelines first. Grow Smart Rhode Island will soon be assembling a set of local images for similar use through our website.

    PBIC Image Library

    Smart Growth America Image Library

  • Upcoming Conferences of Interest

    September 8, 7:00p-9:00p (Free)
    Smart Growth Talk in Pawtucket
    Sponsored by the Pawtucket Public Library
    Pawtucket, RI

    September 9, 9:00a-3:45p
    (reg. deadline 9/2)
    Creating & Preserving Affordable Housing
    Sponsored by the New England Housing Network
    Nasua, NH

    September 9
    Security, Sustainability & Spirituality
    Sponsored by the Apeiron Institute
    Providence, RI

    September 11-14
    Density: Myth & Reality
    Sponsored by Boston Society of Architects / AIA
    Boston, MA

    September 18
    The Entrepreneurship Festival of New England
    Presented by New Commons
    Providence, RI

    September 22
    4th Annual Regional Sustainable Development Forum
    Presented by New Ecology, Inc.
    Cambridge, MA

    September 27
    1st Annual RI Rural Policy Forum 2003
    Sponsored by The Rhode Island Rural Development Council
    Kingston, RI

    Municipal Planners: Don't forget the September 5th deadline to sign up your community for municipal training

  • Listen While You Work

    Smart City is a weekly, hour-long public radio talk show that takes an in-depth look at the people, places, ideas and trends shaping the places where we live and work. Host Carol Coletta talks with national and international public policy experts, elected officials, economists, business leaders, artists, developers, planners and others for a penetrating discussion of urban and rural issues. Although not currently available on local public radio stations, you can "listen live" on Saturdays and Sundays through the Smart City website.

    Past Shows

    Community Development in Rural America - 8/23/2003

    A Broad Look at the Future of Cities - 8/2/2003

    Citizen Decision Makers - 7/26/2003

    New Ideas for Managing Growth - 7/19/2003

  • Confused about Smart Growth?
  •    You're not alone. An increasing number of organizations and political leaders have decided that it's "smart" to be for smart growth. That's why the term smart growth is being used to describe any number of seemingly competing interests. Nationally, Smart Growth America has taken the lead in attempting to define genuine smart growth by pinpointing the issues and policies that affect how we use land to balance life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all.

    What is Smart Growth?
    How is Smart Growth Achieved?
    Who Endorses Smart Growth Nationally?

  • If You Appreciate Our Work ...
  •    ... please make a contribution. Grow Smart depends on tax-deductible contributions from concerned individuals and organizations to carry out the fight for better-managed growth, a strong, sustainable economy, a healthy environment and a just society for all Rhode Islanders.

    Please consider a donation of $30, $50, $100, $500, $1000 or whatever is right for your budget. We'll send a written tax-deductible receipt for your records. Simply click on the credit card below. Thank you.

    Download our printed form and mail in

    See Who's Contributing to Grow Smart

    visit our site

    Scott Wolf - Executive Director

    Sheila Brush - Director of Programs

    John Flaherty - Director of Research & Communications

    phone: 401-273-5711

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