Tag: sustainability & resilience

How Austin’s Commitment to Sustainability is Driving Prosperity

By Kathleen M. O’Donnell, writer and editor at the American Institute of Architects. Austin, Texas, is a shining example of how sustainability can contribute to the development and growth of a city. Through its Office of Sustainability and the work of local architects, Austin provides a thoughtful framework for other cities to consider when crafting

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How American Cities Made Earth Day

On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans from all walks of life took to the streets, the auditoriums, and college campuses to put environmental concerns on the front page. This first Earth Day was a response to dire environmental challenges of the era. An oil well blew out and spilled off the coast of Santa

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How the City of Newark is Leading in Historic Preservation

The city of Newark, New Jersey, has a strategy for historic preservation, multi-sector partnership, and the creation of new residential mixed-use development in the heart of downtown. Newark is demonstrating that, while simple economic arithmetic may dictate demolition and abandonment when it comes to older downtown structures, those willing to see beyond the next fiscal

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Sandy Recovery Highlights Resilience Lessons

The Chen residence in the Midland Beach neighborhood of Staten Island is occupied once again. During the 2012 superstorm known as Hurricane Sandy, the Chen home was inundated with 10 feet of flood water, as were other residences in the Midland and New Dorp Beach areas. As of March 2015, the Chen family is back

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How: (Cities) + (Science) = Resilient Communities

For city leaders preparing for floods, droughts, air and water contaminants, rising sea levels and other potential disasters, scientists are essential partners. Testing water level levels with a measuring pole. If pushed to their intellectual limits, most people will be able to name one great living scientist. At the top of any list is either

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To Thrive in the 21st Century, America Must Be a Nation of Resilient Cities

One of the key priorities for the Resilient Communities for America campaign (RC4A) has been to urge federal leaders to support local resilience through meaningful policy changes. As we reflect on the first year of this campaign it is clear that our message, which has been endorsed by nearly 200 local leaders, is being heard.

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A Mayor’s Perspective on Why Sustainability Matters: An Interview with David Narkewicz, Mayor of Northampton, Mass.

This is a guest post by Hilari Varnadore, Executive Director of STAR Communities. Last week, STAR Communities announced that Northampton, Massachusetts is the first city in the United States to be awarded the 5-STAR Community Rating, STAR’s highest possible designation, and a recognition of Northampton’s strong record instituting a wide range of sustainability practices as

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Mayors, Residents Make Big Strides with National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation

This is a guest post written by Steve Creech, Executive Director of the Wyland Foundation. With cities across the United States facing water scarcity, five U.S. cities were honored today for the commitment of their residents to making water-saving choices as part of the third annual National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation. The cities of Dallas,

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Earth Day Reflections from an Urbanophile

This is the first blog in a series on why the key to protecting our environment lies in city innovation.  I grew up feeling a lot of guilt on Earth Day. When April 22 of every year came around, I felt a huge pile of bricks dropped on my shoulders. How many more natural resources

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Where Big Ideas Start

This is the first in a series of blog posts highlighting “big ideas” reshaping America’s cities. Join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #CityIdeas. A lot has been written about innovation and why particular cities are hotbeds of the big ideas that drive the U.S. economy. These analyses often focus on the conditions

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