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Other Community Workshops

Is there a specific topic that members of your community would like to receive training or have a workshop on?

The Land Use Training Collaborative regularly schedules Core Municipal workshops throughout the year and will announce program dates and locations as they are scheduled. Municipalities that have a particular interest in a specific workshop and would like to host the workshop in their community are encouraged to contact Grow Smart’s Land Use Training Manager at 273-5711 x103.

Other workshops offered include:

Getting to Work: Transportation & Employment Centers
1.5 AICP CM credits available
Rhode Island has some catching up to do to match our New England neighbors’ use of public transportation, especially for commuting. Learn how to be proactive in working with employers to locate in areas already served by or that can be served by public transportation, and help employers understand the tools available to make public transportation a preferred choice for employees. Presenters include Dan Baudouin, The Providence Foundation; Peter Friedrichs, Central Falls; Katherine Trapani, QDC; Andrew Zalewski, Foursquare, ITP; Sarah Ingle and Amy Pettine, RIPTA; Caroline Wells, RI DOP.

Role of Transportation in Building & Sustaining Your Economy
1.5 AICP CM credits available
Keeping people and goods moving is the foundation to all economies. Whether it’s walkable / bikeable communities or major improvements to bridges, roadways, ports and rail for the movement of goods by truck and other freight, this workshop will examine the connections between a variety of transportation improvements to a healthy economy, and review projects that have yielded proven results for residents.

Making Transit Work for Your Community
2.0 AICP CM credits available
Public transportation in Rhode Island has yet to reach its full potential. While the national average is a 5% utilization rate, RI’s is 2.7%. With nearly 80% of the state’s population living within a 10-minute walk of a transit stop, many communities and residents are seeking to make their communities more transit friendly. In this FREE two-hour workshop, participants will hear from RIPTA, state and municipal planners as well as transportation planners to learn the basics of meeting their communities’ transportation needs. Learn how to partner with RIPTA and begin planning first steps towards your community’s vision.

Rhode Island’s Farms & Forests: Gateway to Sustainable Economic Development
Co-sponsored by the Rhode Island Agricultural Partnership
Rhode Island’s unique geography is punctuated by its rich history and resources of farms and forests. Gaining national popularity as a “foodie” destination, the state already has several agricultural ventures, like Farm Fresh Rhode Island, that seek to build the capacity of this sector across producers, markets and consumers. Add to this is the state’s ranking as the 16th most forested, which brings invaluable benefits such as cleaner air and water as well as local recreation and tourism. While Rhode Island’s farms and forests are an undervalued source for sustainable economic development, recent and continuing studies now quantify the economic benefits of these sectors, and demonstrate the rationale for ensuring their full incorporation into our state’s economic planning. However, as local news stories attest, municipal regulations sometimes hamper the efficient conduct or expansion of business of those seeking to produce income and provide recreation from our farms and forests. This workshop features new and ongoing research regarding the economic value of Rhode Island’s farms and forest. The workshop seeks to increase municipalities’ understanding of Rhode Island’s farms’ and forests’ contributions to the state’s economy as well as their benefits to local communities. A substantial portion of time will be used to discuss land-use tools available to municipalities to encourage farm- and forest-based businesses, including comprehensive plans, business-friendly zoning, tax policies and creative development regulations, such as transfer of development rights, conservation development and residential compounds. In addition, other community efforts such as “Buy Local” campaigns and community farms and forests will be discussed. The objective is to provide local officials and volunteers with an understanding of how they can help maximize this sector’s revenue potential.

Making Mixed Use Centers a Reality: Revitalizing for the Long-Term
RI’s landscape is dotted with numerous villages and centers that have historically been successful mixes of places to live, shop, work and play.  From historic mill villages to urban and suburban neighborhood centers, these places are critical assets to economic development.  While new people and markets will populate the future of these places, it is up to current community leaders to ensure their local policies and processes are designed to make these places thrive. This 2-hour workshop leads participants from envisioning new futures for their villages and centers to better understanding the State’s new guidance and tools to learning what it takes to work with developers as partners in making your vision a reality.

Complete Streets for Your Community
Many Rhode Islanders would like to be able to walk, bike or use public transit to get to work or school and to run daily errands. However, they are often unable to do so safely and easily because our roads are currently designed only with cars in mind. Complete Streets is a design approach that allows all users – walkers and bicyclists, young and old, public transit users and automobile drivers – to get where they need to go easily and efficiently. Taught by knowledgeable transportation advocates and DOT staff, this workshop provides residents, property owners and officials with clear information about the Complete Streets approach, how it can benefit your community, and how other communities are establishing and beginning to implement Complete Streets policies.

Making Your Community More Walkable and Bikeable
Walking and biking are the least expensive, most enjoyable, and healthiest ways to get around any community. However, years of automobile – oriented planning and engineering have made this mode of travel difficult or downright dangerous in some places. Mike Lydon, Principal at Street Plans Collaborative explores the on-road and off-road opportunities, challenges and varying approaches that can be used to make communities in Rhode Island more walkable and bikeable. (Originally offered under the Healthy Places by Design initiative, this workshop is now available to municipalities throughout Rhode Island.)

Supporting Working Farms: Why It’s Important, What You and Your Community Can Do
Farming is a tough business – land is expensive, profit margins are thin, risks are great. There are ways that a town can help local farms be successful – and there are ways that a town can make it difficult to keep a farm going. This workshop brings together farmers, local residents, municipal officials and staff for a discussion about what can be done to make sure that future generations can continue to benefit from local farms and local food. (Originally offered under the Healthy Places by Design initiative, this workshop is now available to municipalities throughout Rhode Island.)

Creating Affordable Homes in Your Community: How to Build Support
Sponsored in partnership by HousingWorks RI, Grow Smart Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Housing Resources Commission, Rhode Island Housing, the Corporation for Supportive Housing and the Housing Network of Rhode Island, this workshop is one of a series of programs developed to meet information needs identified by Affordable Housing Committees around the state. The workshops are designed to provide affordable housing volunteers and municipal officials with specific skills and information to help them work more effectively.