Examples Database: Solutions for Cities

By Behroozi, Cy | Nation's Cities Weekly, September 24, 2001 | Go to article overview

Examples Database: Solutions for Cities


Behroozi, Cy, Nation's Cities Weekly


These program descriptions, selected from the Examples of Programs for Cities database, illustrate how small cities are working, often in partnership with neighboring communities and regional organizations, to address a variety of issues. Direct member cities and state municipal leagues may request additional research on these or other topics by calling the Municipal Reference Service (MRS) at (202) 626-3130. They may also access the Examples database through Access Local Government on the Web for free (call MRS for details). If you're a small city and have an innovative program you'd like to share with us, please notify the MRS staff so that it can be added to the database.

Lake Worth, Florida

Population: 28,564
Year Started: 1992
Address: City of Lake Worth, 7 North Dixie Highway,
Lake Worth, FL 33460
Contact: Gene Nowak, City Planner, (561) 586-1600
Email: genenowak@juno.com

With the help of the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council (TCRCP), and input from its citizens, Lake Worth developed a plan to transform its downtown from one dominated by the automobile into a pedestrian-friendly urban center. TCRCP held a community planning charrette which led to a master plan incorporating the concepts of sustainability and new urbanism. Among the specifics in the downtown plan are implementation of traffic calming devices, streetscape upgrades, new building design codes, high density of cultural and civic buildings, park facilities upgrades, school building renovations, and nearby residential neighborhood rehabilitation. TCRCP's four-person, in-house design studio played a large role in creating the master plan. By utilizing the services of TCRCP, Lake Worth saved between $200,000 and $250,000 in private consultant fees.

Source: Lake Worth: reclaiming a small downtown. sustainable.state.fl.us/fdi/fscc/news/local/9901/lakewrth. htm, (Apr. 4, 1999) Tallahassee, FL: Florida Design Initiative.

Find it on the Web at: http://sustainable.state.fl. us/fdi/fscc/news/local/9901/lakewrth.htm

Watertown, South Dakota

Population: 17,592
Program Name: Crime Free Multi-Housing Program
Year Started: 1999
Address: City of Watertown, PO Box 910, Watertown,
SD 57201
Contact: Captain Lon Greenfield, Police Department,
(605) 882-6210

Watertown's Crime Free Multi-Housing Program reduces criminal disturbances in multi-housing complexes. It emphasizes a three-pronged strategy that includes an eight-hour course for managers or owners on crime-fighting strategies, a physical inspection of the property by police, and the use of a Crime-free Lease Addendum. Before a complex can be part of the program, managers and owners have to agree to make certain physical improvements, which can include trimming trees to eliminate hiding spaces, improving lighting, and replanting grass. Once the program began, Watertown saw a 50 percent decrease in calls to complexes that use the program.

Source: Getting results from public safety measures. Small Cities, v3 n3 (May/Jun. 2001) p8, Brunswick, GA: Small Cities Publishing.

Flossmoor, Chicago Heights, Homewood, Matteson, Richton Park, Glenwood, and Olympia Fields, illinois

Address: Village of Flossmoor, 2800 Flossmoor Read,
Flossmoor, IL 60422
Contact: Peggy Glassford, Manager, (708) 708-2300
Email: pglassford@ossmoor.org

To mitigate the flood hazard in the Butterfield Creek watershed, seven municipalities near Flossmoor established the Butterfield Creek Steering Committee. Made up of one representative from each municipality, the Committee sought federal and state assistance in determining how extensive the flood potential was, and what could be done to address the problem. With the help of the Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission and state and federal agencies, the communities created natural stormwater storage areas. These areas not only ease flooding but also enhance quality of life for residents by providing parklands, recreational trails, wildlife habitats, and education centers, and by naturally filtering pollution. …

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