Washington, D.C. (November 14, 2007)- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today recognized one state and four local authorities for innovative community development that protects the environment, preserves community identity, and expands economic opportunity. The winners of the 2007 National Awards for Smart Growth Achievement went to the Housing Authority of Portland, Ore.; the Seattle Housing Authority; the state of Vermont; the town of Barnstable, Mass.; and Manhattan.
The Housing Authority of Portland, Oregon was recognized for Overall Excellence for redeveloping an isolated and distressed public housing site into New Columbia, a neighborhood that improves economic opportunity, community livability, and environmental quality.
The Seattle Housing Authority won the award for Built Projects. It turned a dilapidated neighborhood into High Point, a mixed-use, mixed-income, and environmentally sensitive community.
The Vermont Housing and Conservation Board was recognized in Policies and Regulations. BHCB pursues affordable housing, land conservation, and historic preservation initiatives under a single program that balances competing priorities.
The town of Barnstable, Massachusetts, was honored as in the Waterfront and Coastal Communities category. The town created a development strategy for one of its seven villages, Hyannis, that encourages growth and development in the town center, while reducing growth pressure on environmentally sensitive areas along the coast. The town, among other things, invested in streetscape and wastewater treatment infrastructure. The borough of Manhattan was recognized for Equitable Development.
Manhattan developed an innovative, cooperative strategy to expand the housing and commercial options for central Harlem.
“President Bush and EPA see smart growth as smart for our environment, smart for our economy, and smart for our quality of life,” said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. “And together with our vital community partners-including these 2007 award recipients-we are helping America responsibly build toward that healthier, brighter future.” As communities around the country look for ways to grow that protect and enhance their natural environment and create prosperity, many are turning to smart growth strategies. They are cleaning and reusing previously developed land; planting trees; providing more housing and transportation choices; preserving critical natural areas; and developing vibrant places to live, work, shop and play. In addition to creating great communities, these smart growth strategies also protect the quality of our air, water and land.
The awards ceremony was held November 14 in the Great Hall of the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. The awards were presented by Benjamin H. Grumbles, EPA Assistant Administrator for Water, on behalf of EPA’s Office of Policy, Economics and Innovation (OPEI).
For more information, visit the EPA.