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Table of Contents
Background and Overview
Reasons for Change
P2 Opportunities
All Community Growth links
Only Process links

Essential Links:

Livable Tucson Goals: Highlighted Projects
Listing of highlighted projects toward attaining managed growth.

Ten Steps to Sustainability
Lists important criteria for launching successful sustainability programs, with links.

Smart Growth at the Frontier: Strategies and Resou...
Smart growth tools are not currently widely adopted in rural areas. This publication identifies the ...

Western by Design
"Western by Design" is a toolkit for use by citizen leaders and public officials in rapidly growing ...

Community Growth: Process
P2 and Sustainable Community Development: Process

Pollution prevention has been largely a regulatory and industrial movement. Managing community growth has fallen into the realm of planners and developers. Agency involvement from both groups is needed to achieve satisfactory long and short-term community goals. Involving a broad range of stakeholders within the community is also important.

Development Decisions

Here are some commonly made growth decisions with potentially negative repercussions to sustaining the environment and quality of life in a community:

  • Zoning rules forbidding mix of homes and shops, limiting walkability and causing worse traffic congestion
  • Readily available federal grants and low-cost financing for water and sewer, inviting development further into the countryside
  • A federal tax code where mortgage interest and property tax deductions give people a subtle incentive to buy bigger houses on bigger lots, thus promoting consumption of open space
  • State finances oriented towards building new roads or capacity expansion rather than repairing existing roads or utilizing alternative transportation, and pulling investment and resources from the metropolitan core
  • Commercial development emphasized along transportation corridors rather than "centers based" within residential area
  • Conflict between local and state design standards
  • Minimum lot sizes, established in pristine places to preserve the open feel, conflicting with principles of clustered development
  • Tax rate structures, making sprawl-type developments financially attractive
  • Reliance on population growth for lower per capita property tax
  • Tax subsidies for new roads, sewer and water systems, schools and new businesses that outweigh the tax revenues ultimately received from them
  • Lack of jurisdictional cooperation; where one community (often a city) has more stringent regulations than the surrounding area (county), causing a ring of less dense peripheral development outside the city limits
  • National highway system:

The decision in the 1950's to invest in a national highway system was intended to facilitate commerce and allow citizens to see more of their country. Yet that decision and many of the subsequent decisions to expand roads led to:

  an increased demand for vehicles an increased presumption that roads would be provided and maintained
  a spiral with roads providing more opportunities for cars, and the resulting increase in cars leading to increasing demands for roads
  lost habitat increased air pollution increased dependence on foreign oil

It is not possible to know all the impacts of growth decisions that result in pollution, but avoiding unsustainable growth results in fewer negative effects such as traffic congestion, air pollution, and lost habitat. Thus, the concept of "less is better" runs through all pollution prevention and growth management work.

Hub Last Updated: 08/20/2003

The P2Rx Topic Hub Project was developed by:
The Community Growth Topic Hub was developed by:
Peaks to Prairies
Peaks to Prairies
Contact Laura Estes (Peaks)
406-994-3451 or laurae@montana.edu