Building smart, efficient infrastructure starts by examining the full costs, return on investment, and sustainability of our growth patterns. From large metro areas to small towns, creating mixed-use city centers and neighborhoods maximizes existing infrastructure, a clear economic benefit for taxpayers. This strategy of infilling existing spaces with diverse retail and housing opportunities reduces long-term costs for city government, benefits tourism and business, and fosters the kinds of creative spaces, arts and culture that attract people of all ages. Small, efficient footprints benefit all community members by keeping tax rates low.
Supporting efforts include:
- Understanding that edge development is increasingly expensive over time as new water towers, sewage systems, streetlights, sidewalks, snow plows, garbage collection, etc. add significant costs, without a commensurate tax base
- Maximizing existing infrastructure with "an ‘infill’" approach: building new mixed-use structures on empty lots or under-utilized surface parking lots. Even alleys can become attractive, unique gathering places.
- Building a “smart” power grid for more efficient power transmission, faster restoration, reduced operation and management costs
- High-speed gigabit bandwidth - a must for 21st century communities