In order to build a sustainable and healthy city, smart growth is vital. The 10 principles for smart growth, which was created by the Smart Growth Network, are mix land uses, taking advantage of compact building designs creating a range of housing opportunities and choices, creating walkable neighborhoods, fostering distinctive and attractive communities with a strong sense of place, preserving open spaces, farmlands, natural beauties, and environmental areas, strengthening and directing development towards existing communities, providing a variety of transportation choices, making development decisions predictable, fair, and cost effective, and lastly encouraging community and stakeholder collaboration in development decisions. It is important for our future that many areas follow this smart growth technique.

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A city that has been recognized for its smart growth is Arlington County, Virginia. It has turned from being an auto dependent city to now one of the most recognized examples of sustainability and transit oriented developments in America. A concept called “Bulls Eye” has been implemented that relocated Metro’s orange line away from the center of Interstate 66 to the commercial spine along Wilson and Clarendon Boulevards.  The main focus of the smart growth in Arlington was high density, mixed-use developments along three primary transportation corridors. At the same time, their other focus was to also keep the open spaces and existing neighborhoods that had residential buildings in them. This was done through zoning and land use polices, which helped also create a plan that helped the smart growth to occur.

 

https://www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/smart-growth-illustrated

https://projects.arlingtonva.us/planning/smart-growth/

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