Environment Picture
Topic: Smart Growth

Car dealership saves big energy $$$

Michigan Environmental Report
Dick Genthe Chevrolet, a 90-year-old, family-owned car dealership located in Wyandotte, has reduced energy costs 30% annually and saves close to $40,000 each year as a result of implementing Keen Technical Solutions efficiency plans.
View ArticleMar 18, 2013  •  Winter 2013 - Michigan Environmental Report

Federal grants aim to help Michigan communities be more vibrant, sustainable

Michigan Environmental Report
Smart, sustainable growth in Michigan was buoyed this fall with the receipt of $19 million in federal grants to improve community housing, jobs, transportation planning and infrastructure in five regions of Michigan.
View ArticleDec 15, 2010  •  Fall 2010 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Land Use, Smart Growth

Rail forums build momentum for a more connected future

Michigan Environmental Report
Part way through a run of 16 public forums on the future of Michigan’s rail system, it’s clear that people from all walks of life crave more options for getting around the Great Lakes State.
View ArticleAug 30, 2010  •  Summer 2010 - Michigan Environmental Report

MEC, Realtor: Walkable, vibrant cities are key to Michigan’s urban recovery

Michigan Environmental Report
Michigan needs great, walkable, urban places if it is to mount a serious economic recovery. This is a refreshingly simple message, and one embraced by places like Chicago and Pittsburgh. But it has been a tough sell in Michigan.
View ArticleMay 29, 2009  •  Spring 2009 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Land Use, Smart Growth

Highway through wetlands, use of DDA funds calls into question wisdom of ignoring “Smart Growth” policies

Michigan Environmental Report
Members of the 4 Towns Citizen Action Team, an MEC member group, have been fighting for Smart Growth policies in sprawling Commerce Township, north of Detroit, where proposed development will impact wetlands, contribute to sprawl and do a legal tap dance around a federal order designed to stop a proposed highway extension through wetlands. This update is from 4 Towns Vice President Lorna McEwen.
View ArticleMay 29, 2008  •  Spring 2008 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Land Use, Smart Growth

Joint planning projects across the state earn kudos

Michigan Environmental Report
Several local projects have achievements to report, and the lessons learned from each can be enlightening for leaders and advocates hoping to get more out of their local planning processes.
View ArticleOct 22, 2007  •  Fall 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Smart Growth, Land Use

Planning for economic development: Rising together or sinking separately?

Research Reports
The “Dollars and Sense of Smart Growth” is a series exploring some of the real-world consequences—and the financial impacts—of the commonplace land use decisions being made in communities across the state.
Download ReportJul 11, 2007
RELATED TOPICS: Smart Growth, Land Use

Smart Investments Series: The Dollars and Sense of Smart Growth

Michigan Environmental Report
With a 35% increase in population from 1990 to 2000 and a major divestiture by large corporate forest land owners, the resource and nature-rich Keweenaw Peninsula was facing dramatic and the potentially harmful land use changes at the beginning of the new century.
View ArticleFeb 1, 2007  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Land Use, Smart Growth

Urban sprawl coming to the U.P., too

Michigan Environmental Report
Urban sprawl is commonly thought to be a problem only in the outlying fringes of southeast Michigan, or Grand Rapids or Traverse City. But MEC is also tackling this issue in the Upper Peninsula, trying to get ahead of the sprawl curve before it undermines the unique lifestyle and natural resources of the area.
View ArticleFeb 1, 2007  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Land Use, Smart Growth

You can protect the Great Lakes and build a stronger coastal community with Smart Growth strategies

Research Reports
Stormwater runoff carries pollution straight into Michigan’s lakes, rivers, and streams. In Michigan’s coastal regions, development patterns impact the quality, quantity and velocity of stormwater runoff entering the Great Lakes. New federal requirements based on the Clean Water Act require communities to address this increasing problem. Many Michigan communities are establishing plans to address stormwater runoff, today and into the future.
Download ReportOct 30, 2006

Community, Character and Cash: How you can reform transportation with context sensitive solutions

Research Reports
Context sensitive solutions (CSS) is a new approach to transportation policy. CSS programs -- now underway in numerous states across the U.S. -- are meant to improve the way that transportation projects get envisioned, planned and built. Michigan Environmental Council conducted research and produced this report to provide community leaders with case studies and recommendations to help them implement CSS in their planning processes. Based on our research, we outline ten critical points to follow for a successful CSS program in Michigan.
Download ReportDec 1, 2005

Ten state case studies of context sensitive solutions (CSS) implementation

Research Reports
Each of the ten states described in our research is implementing context sensitive solutions (CSS) through new policies on project development, staff training, conferences, research, and community outreach and involvement. Taken together, they provide a template for success and offer guidelines for building a program in Michigan.
Download ReportDec 1, 2005

Survey of existing programs within the Michigan Department of Transportation

Research Reports
MDOT currently has programs in place that can serve as starting points for developing a fully integrated context sensitive solutions (CSS) program. Among them are programs that focus on safety and balancing the flow of traffic (Access Management), historical features (Heritage Routes), and creative technological solutions for transportation problems (Intelligent Transportation Systems).
Download ReportDec 1, 2005

Smart Growth for Clean Water: Innovative strategies for NPDES Phase II Stormwater Management in Michigan

Research Reports
Polluted stormwater runoff is one of the nation's leading threats to clean water. Rain and snowmelt running over parking lots, roofs, over-fertilized lawns and open construction sites wash dirt, chemicals and bacteria into the water we drink. Communities across Michigan are developing plans to comply with federal stormwater reduction requirements. Smart Growth tools can help Michigan communities find their own, unique ways to address the water quality impacts of land use changes, development and stormwater runoff.
Download ReportJun 1, 2005
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