In November, DOT and HUD announced the launch of the Location Affordability Portal, a cost calculation tool that allows users to estimate housing and transportation costs for neighborhoods across the country. The LAP will help consumers and communities better understand the combined costs of housing and transportation associated with living in a specific region, street, or neighborhood and make better-informed decisions about where to live, work, and invest.
Check out the portal HERE.
Officials from the Partnership Agencies visited Little Rock and North Little Rock to discuss how the cities are working with federal partners to improve the downtown area. Officials also heard from representatives from the East Arkansas Planning and Development District about the impact of federal investments in their region.
Watch the video of the presentation at the Clinton School of Public Service Speaker Series here.
In September 2013, US EPA announced the release of the Smart Location Database, a consistent nationwide data resource for measuring location efficiency. It includes over 90 variables characterizing the built environment, transit service, destination accessibility, employment, and demographics at the census block group scale. Users can download data for their selected region, view data online in an interactive map, or access the data through a variety of web services.
Learn more about the Smart Location Database and access data.
In July, DOT released the Livable Communities Discussion Board, a “community of practice,” or online public forum to share information and ask questions about different topics related to livable communities. The site is an online community of practitioners in public, private, and non-profit agencies and organizations at the local, State, and Federal levels, who are interested in helping communities provide more transportation choices, encourage access to good jobs and affordable housing, support quality schools, and promote safer streets and roads.
HUD, DOT, and EPA jointly released a database of training and technical assistance programs available to all communities on a variety of Partnership-related topics. Review the guide here.
Sustainable communities are places that have a variety of housing and transportation choices, with destinations close to home. As a result, they tend to have lower transportation costs, reduce air pollution and stormwater runoff, decrease infrastructure costs, preserve historic properties and sensitive lands, save people time in traffic, be more economically resilient and meet market demand for different types of housing at different price points. Rural, suburban, and urban communities can all use sustainable communities strategies and techniques to invest in healthy, safe and walkable neighborhoods, but these strategies will look different in each place depending on the community’s character, context, and needs.
Developing more sustainable communities is important to our national goals of strengthening our economy, creating good jobs now while providing a foundation for lasting prosperity, using energy more efficiently to secure energy independence, and protecting our natural environment and human health. Three federal agencies came together to create the Partnership for Sustainable Communities to help places around the country develop in more environmentally and economically sustainable ways. To guide its work, the Partnership developed six livability principles: