Linking Greenville's Neighborhoods to Jobs and Open Space        


City of Greenville, South CarolinaMarch 2013, Issue No. 13
Connections for Sustainability - Speaker logo


Feeling Safe, By Design


The goal of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) is to created safe, vibrant neighborhoods.


The design of buildings, yards, streets, and parks has a powerful effect on behavior. CPTED offers a way to think about designing these features with safety and crime prevention in mind. For example, a row of houses with front porches and clear lines of sight can make it easier to keep "eyes on the street" and discourage criminal activity before it happens.


Please join us on March 14 for a conversation with CPTED expert Art Hushen, and learn about tips to use in your home landscape or neighborhood. We look forward to talking with you in the Sustainable Conversation soon!


For more Information visit the Connections Website. For upcoming speakers in the Sustainable Conversation series, stay tuned to this newsletter and the Connections Calendar.


Connections for Sustainability - film logo


Join us for Bike Night





Bicycles and alternative transportation are playing a part in
building and revitalizing neighborhoods and cities across the
nation. Emerging trends such as dedicated bike paths, bike
sharing programs, and biking to work are impacting individual
choices and changing the way cities think about sustainable
transportation systems and the wise use of public expenditures.

Join us March 18 for a series of short films followed by a discussion of the role and impact of biking on our cities and society. Popcorn and soft drinks will be served. We look forward to seeing you at the Sustainable Cinema soon! 


For more information visit the Connections Website. For upcoming films to be included in the Sustainable Cinema, stay tuned to this newsletter and the Connections Calendar.




Park Week-Long Charrette




The week of February 22-28 the City held a public charrette for the potential park in the West side along the Swamp Rabbit Trail. The week began with a kick-off meeting on Thursday, 2/22, and proceeded to a Saturday design charrette where participants drew their own designs for the potential new park across from AJ Whittenberg Elementary School. Open studio was hosted Monday thru Wednesday at the Tabernacle Baptist Church, during which time the consultants worked diligently to create three design schemes. During this time the consultants were visited by nine classes of 2nd and 3rd grade students from AJ Whittenberg and St. Anthony elementary schools, and each student drew their ideas for the park. 
Finally, the week wrapped up with a public meeting on Thursday on 2/28 where the three draft design schemes were presented, and more than 70 attendees voted on their favorite design. The three design schemes can be found by following this link.


The week-long charrette was a great start to the park planning process which will continue through May. The three initial designs generated by the consultants will now be worked into new alternatives to reflect the public input received in the 2/28 meeting. These new alternatives for the park design will be the subject of a public meeting to be scheduled sometime later this Spring. For more information on the park charrette and the park planning process please visit the Connections Website.
Sustainability Spotlight




By Jaclin DuRant



We all know that travelling by bicycle instead of by car is good exercise and better for the environment, since we're travelling under our own power and not burning fossil fuels. But, there are a myriad of other reasons to consider the bicycle as a beneficial and sustainable form of transportation when wondering how to get from point A to point Z.


Your pocketbook: From a purely personal economics standpoint, biking makes a lot of sense. According to a study by AAA in 2012, the average cost of owning and driving a car ranged from over $6,500 to more than $11,000 a year. This cost includes gas, maintenance, insurance, and taxes. When compared to even a top of the line bicycle and safety gear, that's still a lot of money that you could save annually.


Your community's pocketbook: A common argument against bikes is the cost of redesigning roads and bike lanes for safe commutes, but when weighed over time, this argument holds very little water. Bikes cause less wear and tear than cars, so more bikes on the roads means less maintenance needs over time. This is only the start of economic benefits for the community. The results from the first of a three year impact study of the Swamp Rabbit Trail found that businesses along the trail saw an increase in revenue from 30% to as high as 85%. Bicycle tourism can bring even more money into communities, as cyclists from out of town stop to eat, drink, relax, and buy.


Community safety and attractiveness: More people on bikes means less people in cars, which leads to less congestion and traffic, less noise, less air pollution, and a more enjoyable commute. People on bikes are also another level of "eyes on the street," watching out for the safety of the neighborhood.


Business benefits: Multiple studies have shown that employees who regularly bike to work have reduced levels of absenteeism and increased physical health. Increased physical health leads to fewer doctor's office visits, and less cost in health care and health insurance.


Health: Cycling is a great low impact exercise that has been shown to have multiple health benefits, from weight loss and increased cardiovascular and muscular health to reduced risk of stroke, diabetes, and overall mortality.

Bicycles offer a range of benefits to the environment, the individual, and the community. 


As our City continues to change and grow, bike share systems, bike paths and trails, bike incentives, bike tourism, and more will all be options that we may wish to explore.


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