Inclusive, Vibrant Communities

Our past choices about where and how we grow have led to limited and unaffordable housing, and left too many of us dependent on driving for almost everything. 

Smarter land use means more inclusive, vibrant, and sustainable communities: communities that are safe and convenient for walking and biking to daily needs – schools, stores, parks, and jobs; offer a diversity of housing options for people at different income levels; and are served by reliable, frequent public transit.

It’s good for our environment, good for people, and good for business.

Direct new homes and businesses to existing communities with access to transit

Providing more homes and businesses in existing communities with transit supports connected, economically thriving communities. It is also more sustainable and efficient than chasing sprawl development with new and costly infrastructure. Instead, focusing growth in already established communities allows us to welcome new neighbors and means private developers can contribute to modernizing aging infrastructure, like our schools, transit services, roads, sidewalks, and stormwater facilities.

Create compact, walkable, bike-friendly, mixed-use communities

We envision communities where each of us can conveniently meet our daily needs, and have more choices in how we get around. Walkable, bikeable, transit-oriented communities can provide easy access to jobs, services, retail, and community gathering spaces. This creates opportunities for connection and requires shorter and fewer car trips—reducing household transportation costs and greenhouse gas emissions.

Preserve rural farms, forests and natural areas 

The smart growth approach to land use reduces pressure to convert farms and forests and natural areas to development – which is key in this era of climate change. Instead, smart growth focuses on turning existing and underutilized parking lots and commercial spaces into mixed-use, walkable neighborhoods with homes and businesses. Along with tools like agricultural zoning and conservation easements, this allows us to protect our farms, forests, natural areas, and drinking water supplies. 

Latest Happenings

CSG Testimony: Support ZC 23-25 Chevy Chase DC rezoning

We wish to express our support for the proposed zoning changes to Chevy Chase DC’s main street. We have participated in and tracked closely the entire process - the Comprehensive Plan and Future Land Use Map, the Housing Equity Report, the Small Area Plan, the “Our RFP” public process for the library site, and this rezoning proposal.

Comments: AlexWest Draft Recommendations (Alexandria, Support)

The Coalition for Smarter Growth supports the overall recommendations for a more walkable, transit-friendly, mixed-use and inclusive West End, with greater housing security and opportunities for families to live in its neighborhoods. We also appreciate the City’s thoughtful planning process that has emphasized proactive engagement for all communities to participate.

Testimony: CB 15 – Omnibus revisions to Zoning Ordinance to implement Plan 2035 (Prince George’s, Support)

March 20, 2024 (updated 4/17/2024) Hon. Tom Dernoga, ChairPHED CommitteePrince George’s County Council Wayne Curry Administration Building1301 McCormick Drive, Largo MD Dear Chair Dernoga and members of the Committee: Please accept this testimony on behalf of the Coalition for Smarter Growth (CSG), the leading organization advocating for walkable, bikeable, inclusive, transit-oriented

Testimony: Brightseat Tech Park (Prince George’s, Support)

Data centers are a rapidly growing land use, and can often have negative impacts on adjacent neighborhoods and rural areas. In this case, we view this site as a suitable location. We see these benefits.

Testimony: Takoma Park Minor Master Plan Amendment (Support)

We support the draft Takoma Park Minor Master Plan Amendment, which outlines a vision for an inclusive, environmentally resilient, and vibrant community with improved access to parks and amenities and an abundance of housing that supports the continued affordability and unique diversity of this plan area.