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Springtime Smart Growth Happenings
The new ReThink Montgomery speaker series and the Transportation/Land Use Connections program, now accepting applications, both aim to improve livability in the D.C. metro area.  Photo: Sabine01.

The new ReThink Montgomery speaker series and the Transportation/Land Use Connections program, now accepting applications, both aim to improve livability in the D.C. metro area. Photo by Sabine01.

For those of you who haven’t gotten your livability and smart growth fix lately, we’d like to alert you to a couple local news items.

First, the Montgomery County Planning Department is kicking off ReThink Montgomery, a weekly speaker series focusing on smart growth issues.

Rethink Montgomery will highlight innovative planning solutions that can connect culture, health, food, knowledge, ecology, economy, infrastructure, and energy in Montgomery County, Md. Guest speakers will analyze how these elements should be integrated into the planning process to create quality places.

The speaker series begins April 8 with a panel featuring five local bloggers: David Alpert (Greater Greater Washington), Cindy Cotte Griffiths (Rockville Central), Dan Reed (Just Up the Pike), Eric Robbins (Thayer Avenue) and Barnaby Zall (Friends of White Flint).

ReThink Montgomery runs through June 3. All sessions will be held as part of weekly Planning Board meetings, Thursdays at 7:30 pm at Park and Planning headquarters. Some will qualify for continuing education credits for planning professionals.

In addition, the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) has released the call for projects for the FY 2011 Transportation/Land-Use Connections (TLC) Program.

The TLC Program provides support to local governments in the Metropolitan Washington region as they work to improve transportation and land use coordination. Through the program, the TPB provides communities with consultant assistance to catalyze or enhance planning efforts.

The TLC Program encourages innovative ideas. The last round of winning projects included a study identifying locations for bikeways and sidewalks along the Purple Line in Prince George’s County, an assessment of how draft streetscape guidelines developed by the District’s Golden Triangle Business Improvement District can better create a cohesive feel for the neighborhood and an analysis of the transportation impacts of neighborhood-scale retail in Montgomery County.

Any member jurisdiction of the TPB is eligible to apply. Application information is available on the TLC Website. The application deadline is May 12, 2010.

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