Many communities are starting to recognize the advantages of Smart Growth. In tough economic times Smart Growth makes more sense than ever. A compact growth plan can save considerable money. The savings come from simple things like reducing the miles people have to drive and reducing the roads that need to be paved or patrolled.
With urban sprawl cities need to maintain roads, provide fire services, policing protection. Who has to pay to maintain the roads, provide fire and policing protection, basic services etc.? Can cities financially sustain these type of developments? Is this a fiscally responsible way to plan our city? This does not mean "no development" as our critics often claim but rather a different type of development. According to the Growth Management Study which was finally released to the citizens of Cranbrook in September we will have a population which is older that average in British Columbia. What sort of advantages could this bring to our community? What style of homes will these people want to live in? Where do they want to live in Cranbrook? We know other communities are seeing success in developing their downtown cores. This seems to be the place many baby boomers want to live. Let Cranbrook be an example to the rest of the province that compact and sustainable growth can build a vibrant, healthier and more fiscally responsible city.
Several key steps to help communities grow smartly are:
- Develop and revitalize downtown areas
-create in-town residential development
- Build traditional, walk-able, compact neighborhoods
- Use conservation easements to protect the landscape and working ranches
- Avoid building developments in danger zones such as fire-prone wilderness areas or flood-prone riparian areas
- Avoid creating subdivisions that create burdens on other citizens
Citizens for a Livable Cranbrook Society provides grassroots leadership and an inclusive process, with a voice for all community members, to ensure that our community grows and develops in a way that incorporates an environmental ethic, offers a range of housing and transportation choices, encourages a vibrant and cultural life and supports sustainable, meaningful employment and business opportunities.