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Our failure to create more meaningful communities for aging in place | Kaid Benfield's Blog | Switchboard, from NRDC

Our failure to create more meaningful communities for aging in place | Kaid Benfield's Blog | Switchboard, from NRDC | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
  If it takes a village to age in place, what happens if there is no village?  What happens if there is a sort of neo-village that doesn't function like a real one?  With the largest generation in American history...
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Suburban Land Trusts
Conserving land in older, "inner" suburbs for small parks, gardens, natural areas & stormwater management
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Reinventing the Suburbs-Towson, MD

Reinventing the Suburbs-Towson, MD | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

"...suburban centers have to exhibit the features that a new generation of dwellers is looking for in the same way their center cities are trying to do it ... Great is the danger that in the end, not only will the various "rows" and squares" have similar names, but also use the same generic formulas which will make them indistinguishable from identical architectural tricks, chain stores and streetscaping. The reinvented suburban centers could easily become as much 'anywhere USA' as the suburban malls that preceded them."

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Automatic Cars and Suburban Design | Sustainable Cities Collective

Automatic Cars and Suburban Design | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Automated, technologically advanced, self-driving cars are coming, and boosters of drivable suburbia are hoping that the adoption of this mode of transportation will be a potent weapon against mass transit and cities. But what they mean for towns and suburbs isn’t quite so clear.
Bhopkins's insight:

"Probably the biggest change is the demise of the large parking lot. These huge slabs of asphalt dominate suburban commercial landscapes, often taking up 80 percent of commercial parcels. They dominate the streetscape, and arterial suburban roads are lined with them. Without personal vehicles to park, there’s no need for a parking lot. That land could be put to productive use."

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Every Kid in a Park

Every Kid in a Park | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

Today, more than 80 percent of American families live in urban areas, and many lack easy access to safe outdoor spaces.  At the same time, kids are spending more time than ever in front of screens instead of outside.  A 2010 Kaiser Family Foundation study found that young people now devote an average of more than seven hours a day to electronic media use, or about 53 hours a week – more than a full time job.

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Nature Conservancy Magazine - Finding Subirdia

Nature Conservancy Magazine - Finding Subirdia | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Have you noticed all of the birds that live in your own backyard? Ten ways to be a good neighbor.
Bhopkins's insight:

"Wild reserves provide shelter for unique birds not found in the city, and they are absolutely essential. But the greatest variety of birds is often found in the suburbs."  - See more at: http://magazine.nature.org/features/finding-subirdia.xml#sthash.WSPchZ9P.dpuf

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Baltimore Public Transportation and Urban Connection | Sustainable Cities Collective

Baltimore Public Transportation and Urban Connection | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Baltimore’s Red Line will be much more than a new transit mode for a single city. Beyond making it easier to travel across Baltimore, the Red Line will join MARC and the Purple Line to better integrate Baltimore City and County with Washington DC, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County.
Bhopkins's insight:

"The Red Line is an example of why it’s important to think beyond just one city or one mode of transportation. When we consider the networks that multiple modes can build across multiple regions—local rail lines combined with a regional commuter train and park and rides, for example—we can reap the benefits of a more integrated Baltimore and Washington region."

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Urban areas 'provide haven' for bees

Urban areas 'provide haven' for bees | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

new research suggests that bees and other pollinating insects thrive as well in towns and cities as they do in farms and nature reserves.

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5 Innovative Ways Environmentalists Are Working to Save the Earth

5 Innovative Ways Environmentalists Are Working to Save the Earth | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
As an increasingly dire prognosis about the health of the planet emerges, it's worth remembering that environmental pioneers around the world are working at the highest levels to create a greener, more sustainable future....
Bhopkins's insight:

"These are the stories of a team of fellows selected by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy to present their work at the 2014 World Parks Congress in Australia, part of a series called "Conservation Innovation: Voices of a New Generation""

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For Philadelphia and Baltimore, Parks are Central to Livability

For Philadelphia and Baltimore, Parks are Central to Livability | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
“Many people think parks are easy, but parks are one of the hardest things for governments to do because of the physical and human aspects,” explained Peter Harnik, Hon. ASLA, director of The Trust for Public Land’s Center for City Park Excellence.
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Project for Public Spaces | 11 Reasons Why Trains, Buses, Bikes, and Walking Move Us Toward a Brighter Future

Project for Public Spaces | 11 Reasons Why Trains, Buses, Bikes, and Walking Move Us Toward a Brighter Future | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

"Here are some little known facts about how we get around:

  • Americans made 10.7 billion trips on public transportation in 2013–the highest numbersince 1956 when the massive mobilization to build highways and push suburban development began. These numbers represent a 37 percent transit increase since 1995 ..."
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Placemaking and Population in the Suburbs | Sustainable Cities Collective

Placemaking and Population in the Suburbs | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Those of us who style ourselves as "urbanists," myself included, much of the time tend to get snobbish about, you know, ordinary people: folks who live in suburbs, drive cars out of some combination of necessity and choice, and haven't the slightest interest in what the "creative class" might be.
Bhopkins's insight:

"I've been thinking a lot lately about the meaning of the word "placemaking," not least because I just joined a firm with PlaceMakers as its name. I believe it's about more than improving public spaces, though that is indeed a big component; and it's about more than the physical design of a place, though design also can make a huge contribution. Ultimately it's about creating community rooted in a geographical location."

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Bay Journal - Article: Water quality monitoring shows some long-term improvements fading away

Bay Journal - Article: Water quality monitoring shows some long-term improvements fading away | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

" the new data — which includes monitoring results through 2013 — detected no significant improving phosphorus trends in any of the nine largest Bay tributaries during the previous 10 years, while phosphorus concentrations showed significant increasing trends in two: the Susquehanna and the Choptank rivers."

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Residents question lack of open space in Towson Row project

Residents question lack of open space in Towson Row project | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
A lot of people say the massive Towson Row project is committing a cardinal sin of development — a lack of open space, recreational opportunities or even a place to walk a dog amid the more than 1 1/2 million square feet of restaurants, retail stores, offices, apartments, student housing and a large hotel that Caves Valley Partners proposes to build on five acres in the downtown core.
Bhopkins's insight:

""It's suburbia," and for a suburban development, there's not a lot of appeal for families with young children, either recreational or in terms of open space and landscaping."

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Aesthetics of residential developments may get fresh look in Towson

Aesthetics of residential developments may get fresh look in Towson | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
John DiMenna isn't exactly overwhelmed in his role as chairman of Baltimore County's Design Review Panel.
Bhopkins's insight:

"Marks plans to introduce a council resolution calling for the panel to review the look of residential as well as commercial projects in the downtown core."

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Park and Street Design and Integration | Sustainable Cities Collective

Park and Street Design and Integration | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
We should be thinking, especially in small parks, about how streets and sidewalks can complement the park, or how connections feed into the park. Too frequently we focus our attention solely inside the boundaries of the park and forget the network of sidewalks, streets, and laneways that surround it.
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When the Sidewalks Were Wider Than the Streets

When the Sidewalks Were Wider Than the Streets | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Compare footage of New York's 23rd Street, shot by Thomas Edison in 1901, to today.
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Americans Are Driving Less, But Road Expansion Is Accelerating | Streetsblog USA

Americans Are Driving Less, But Road Expansion Is Accelerating | Streetsblog USA | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Bhopkins's insight:

Americans drive fewer miles today than in 2005, but since that time the nation has built 317,000 lane-miles of new roads — or about 40,000 miles per year. Maybe that helps explain why America’s infrastructure is falling apart.

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Maryland is #4 in the nation in transit ridership

Maryland is #4 in the nation in transit ridership | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Jim Titus recently took on Maryland governor Larry Hogan's claim that that fewer than 10% of Marylanders use transit. There's another national survey that provides data for every state, and confirms that about 30% of Marylanders used transit in a specific month—fourth highest in the US.
Bhopkins's insight:

"The Maryland sample is of a sufficient size (643 respondents aged 16 and up) to allow for 95% confidence that the estimate is accurate within about five percentage points."

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City Gardeners Track the Value of Urban Farming – Next City

City Gardeners Track the Value of Urban Farming – Next City | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
How can a city tomato help? New app counts the ways.
Bhopkins's insight:

"More than 215 gardens, concentrated in the Northeast but with some sprinkled across the U.S. and Canada, are using the Toolkit. Since the app debuted last May, those plots have collectively grown 46,600 pounds of food."

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Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan wants to kill the hated ‘rain tax.’ But can he?

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan wants to kill the hated ‘rain tax.’ But can he? | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Even if counties aren’t required to charge a stormwater management fee, they could still do so.
Bhopkins's insight:

"Hogan’s bill would lift the requirement that these jurisdictions charge this fee. Local officials would still have to find funding to continue their anti-pollution efforts, which are mandated by the federal government, and they could choose to continue charging the fee."

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2015 Trends to Watch

2015 Trends to Watch | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
To supplement our list of Nonprofit Trends to Watch in 2015, this post offers context for the top trends and shares how the National Council of Nonprofits and its state association network are responding to these trends. We will continue to highlight notable new or changing trends that affect charitable nonprofits throughout the year on the nonprofit sector trends hub on our website.
Bhopkins's insight:
#3 Governments shifting their burdens to nonprofits

"We have been tracking this trend for several years, and anticipate that as new lawmakers take their seats in state and local governments, the tendency of politicians to look to the limited resources of charitable nonprofits to fill government budget holes will continue."

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Urban Resilience and Green Building | Sustainable Cities Collective

Urban Resilience and Green Building | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
An analysis explored the use of green infrastructure to reach 76-acre-feet of water storage, with the goal of a 20 percent reduction in peak discharge for a 100-year storm event. The researchers walked through green infrastructure options and selected the “most viable” during meetings with the local NOAA team.
Bhopkins's insight:

"...climate-smart cities use green infrastructure in four ways. They create “safe, interconnected opportunities to walk or bike; cool down the city by planting trees and creating parks; absorb stormwater to save energy and recharge aquifers; and protect cities through green shorelines.”

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In-Between a Bike and a Car

In-Between a Bike and a Car | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
The makers of the ELF believe their enclosed, three-wheeled, low-carbon vehicle is the perfect transportation compromise.
Bhopkins's insight:

Two years ago, Cotter launched Organic Transit, a startup that designs, builds, and sells the ELF, an "electric, light, and fun" vehicle that's essentially an enclosed recumbent tricycle. With an optional electric- and solar-powered motor, the ELF can go up to 30 miles per hour. 

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Suburbia and Dead Space Usage and Recovery | Sustainable Cities Collective

Suburbia and Dead Space Usage and Recovery | Sustainable Cities Collective | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
In recent months there’s been a lot of talk about dead suburban malls and what we should do with them. This topic is of interest because Denver has been retrofitting its dead and dying suburban malls for a while now, on a New Urbanist “town center” model.
Bhopkins's insight:

"It’s safe to say that Denver’s New Urban mall retrofits still signal—to Americans, Europeans, and ethnic “Others” alike—homogeneity and exclusivity."

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St. John Properties to add spec buildings at Baltimore Crossroads - Baltimore Business Journal

St. John Properties to add spec buildings at Baltimore Crossroads - Baltimore Business Journal | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Brisk leasing activity is driving the new construction.
Bhopkins's insight:

"One of the major components of the 1,200-acre Baltimore Crossroads is a 200-acre tract set aside for a residential development known as Greenleigh."

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Notice Change in Towson? Planning Director Shares What's Ahead for the County's Up-and-Coming Urban Hub - Baltimore Fishbowl

Notice Change in Towson? Planning Director Shares What's Ahead for the County's Up-and-Coming Urban Hub - Baltimore Fishbowl | Suburban Land Trusts | Scoop.it
Over 30 years ago, when Andrea Van Arsdale graduated from college with a degree in wildlife biology, she probably never expected to find herself responsible for overseeing major changes to densely populated (by humans) communities in Baltimore County, such as the current redevelopment of Towson—a series of projects backed by more than $800 million in …
Bhopkins's insight:

"Currently, the project that takes up much of her time focuses on revitalizing Towson’s downtown business district. Long a sleepy suburban area, Towson — with more than 48,000 workers, 55,000-plus permanent residents, and a college student population of approximately 25,000 —has the potential to earn a much different reputation, especially as the town’s numbers are expected to grow."

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