October 20, 2010
HUD AND DOT AWARD FUNDING TO CREATE SUSTAINABLE LIVABLE COMMUNITIES IN NEW HAMPSHIRE
Unprecedented joint funding to foster integrated approach to housing, jobs and transportation
In an unprecedented collaboration between two federal agencies, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today jointly awarded $206,618 to help stimulate a new generation of sustainable and livable communities in New Hampshire, connect housing, employment and economic development with transportation and other infrastructure improvements. The joint HUD-DOT funding
will support 62 local and regional partnerships seeking to create a more holistic and integrated approach to
connecting affordable housing, job opportunities and transportation corridors.
"Today two federal agencies come together to produce a win-win for local communities around the country," said
HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. "We're helping local and regional planners connect all the dots in their efforts to
make their communities more sustainable and livable. These grants will help communities to hit on all cylinders, producing more affordable housing near good jobs and commercial centers which will help to reduce our energy consumption and increase competitiveness."
DOT Secretary Ray LaHood said, "With the investments HUD and DOT are making today, we are strengthening neighborhoods by connecting housing with affordable and sustainable transportation choices. This is a win-win for people who live in these communities because they will have travel options to better serve them."
HUD is awarding $40 million in new Sustainable Community Challenge Grants to help support local planning designed
to integrate affordable housing, good jobs and public transportation. Meanwhile, DOT is awarding nearly $28 million in TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) II Planning Grants to implement localized plans that ultimately lead to projects that integrate transportation, housing and economic development.
The City of Claremont will be awarded $58,740. Claremont will undertake a comprehensive zoning analysis of its
City Center. The City will identify effective tools and practices to maintain its historic cityscape, encourage redevelopment to maximize use of existing infrastructure, encourage infill development, direct private investment and economic development to the downtown, and improve the quantity and quality of housing. The City will facilitate public involvement in the creation of a vision for the Center City, conduct a baseline inventory of existing property and housing, identify parcels for redevelopment and infill opportunities, model the Center City utilizing GIS data sets, and develop recommended changes to the city's zoning ordinance. The project will promote infill development in the historic downtown area and direct private investment toward the area while preserving historic architecture. Also,
the project will establish a baseline inventory of housing quality downtown to be a basis for future investments in affordable housing.
The Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Regional Planning Commission will be awarded $147,878. The Commission will collect and analyze data to help community leaders to increase the supply of affordable housing within walking distance of food sources. The project will include mapping exercises to understand the patterns of development that have resulted from current regulation and policies. The process will engage local citizens in training sessions on GPS equipment, walkability assessments, and healthy food source data collection. The process will focus on underserved census tracts to engage volunteers about local policies, how they can participate, and how they are able to shape the quality of life in their communities. Communities will also participate in a regulatory/policy audit process to incorporate measures that enable appropriately scaled grocery stores to locate in areas that encourage walkable communities. This project will assist community leaders in implementing policy changes that accommodate housing supply and new food source options to be within walking distance of one another. Also, this project will provide the necessary information for municipal leaders to understand the long term health implications of creating mixed-use village centers that accommodate healthy food choices within walking distance of diverse housing and businesses.
HUD's Sustainable Communities Challenge Grants will foster reform and reduce barriers to achieving affordable, economically vital and sustainable communities. These funds will be used by communities, large and small, to
address local challenges to integrating transportation and housing. When these activities are done in conjunction
with transportation projects, they can greatly increase the efficiency and access of local transportation while encouraging mixed-use or transit-oriented development. Such efforts may include amending or updating local master plans, zoning codes, and building codes to support private sector investment in mixed-use development, affordable housing and the re-use of older buildings. Other local efforts may include retrofitting main streets to provide safer routes for children and seniors, or preserving affordable housing and local businesses near new transit stations.
TIGER II Planning Grants will prepare or design surface transportation projects that would be eligible for funding
under the TIGER II Discretionary Grant program. These projects include highways, bridges, transit, railways, ports
or bicycle and pedestrian facilities.
Rather than require applicants to navigate two separate grant application procedures that might be on different timelines and with different requirements, HUD and DOT joined their two new discretionary planning program t
o create one point of entry to federal resources for local, innovative sustainable community planning projects.
The Community Challenge grants compliment the 45 Sustainable Communities Regional Grants announced last week
by HUD. The Challenge Grants help to support local communities seeking to integrate housing, transportation, and environmental strategies that will enhance local economic development, provide greater housing and transportation choices, and develop long-range visions for how they want their community to grow.
The new HUD-DOT program also builds on the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, an innovative new interagency collaboration, launched by President Obama in June 2009, between the Department of Transportation (DOT), the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Guided by six Livability Principles, the Partnership is designed to remove the traditional federal government silos that exist between departments and strategically target the agencies' transportation, land use, environmental, housing
and community development resources to provide communities the resources they need to build more livable, sustainable communities.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov.