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


Testimony: Support for Local Map Amendment for the Chelsea School, Silver Spring

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We want to express our support for this proposed map amendment and project. We have reviewed proposal, discussed it with community members and visited the site. We are also familiar with EYA and its record of quality developments around the region, and open and honest relationships with communities. When a townhouse is the right solution, EYA is one of the best developers to build that project.
Young Planner Showcase

Young Planner Showcase

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The world of development and planning is complex and often elusive. But on Wednesday, May 25, 2011, 3 of the region's most promising young planners made things at least a little clearer. At the event they presented their best work, got feedback from our expert panelists, and answered all your questions. Consider it American Idol for planners, but slightly less vicious and without any fear of Steven Tyler.

Testimony before the Montgomery County Council supporting the Takoma/Langley Crossroads Sector Plan

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Overall, we want to express our support for this thoughtful plan. It addresses the need for transit-oriented redevelopment around the Purple Line and guides the re-creation of an inner suburban district. It provides policy goals to preserve existing affordable housing, increase MPDUs, and retain small businesses. The plan seeks to create interconnected, walk- and bicycle-friendly streets. We appreciate the plan’s aim to create urban parks, green streets, and improved water quality.

Arlington: Testimony in Support of the East Falls Church Area Plan

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The Coalition for Smarter Growth endorses the East Falls Church Plan while making recommendations for enhancement and implementation of the plan. We commend the extensive process that has gone into the development of a sustainable, walkable vision for the future -- including a citizen task force that included representatives of neighborhood associations and other stakeholders, as well as additional analysis and refinement by county staff based on feedback from the community.
Restoring Streams, Revitalizing Communities Along the Richmond Highway Corridor

Restoring Streams, Revitalizing Communities Along the Richmond Highway Corridor

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Revitalizing Richmond Highway with mixed-use walkable development, while linking revitalization, stream restoration, and better stormwater management – priceless! These interconnected issues were featured at our community forum, co-sponsored by the Friends of Dyke Marsh, Lee District Association of Civic Organizations, and Audubon Naturalist Society.