The Central Jersey Housing Resource Center honored New Jersey Future with its Outstanding Achievement in Affordable Housing Award.
A new Rutgers report highlights the coming problem of aging and abandoned suburban office parks. Those facilities that cannot be repurposed to meet the market demand for mixed-use, transit-accessible employment centers should not be the recipients of state job-creation incentives.
The Federal Transit Administration’s awarding of a $400,000 grant to examine the possibility of building a new light-rail station in Jersey City demonstrates tangible commitment to advancing economic development through transit-oriented development.
During National Walk and Bike to School month, we look at some compelling reasons to make it easier for schoolchildren to walk or bike to school – most notably increased physical activity and reduced traffic. The new federal transportation legislation includes funding for cycling and walking programs and infrastructure, but also enough flexibility that those funds might get diverted for other uses. We urge the New Jersey state DOT to keep bicycle and pedestrian funding, and we encourage the development of more communities where housing and schools are within walking distance of each other.
The transit station inventory provides policy makers, municipal officials and development professionals with a systematic way to identify the highest-potential opportunities for various kinds of development around transit stations.
Johnson & Johnson is establishing four life-sciences innovation centers but none in New Jersey, even though the state has many of the key assets that can make innovation districts successful. New Jersey needs ways to put an innovation district strategy to work here.
New Jersey has recently been losing jobs in several of the key industries highlighted in the draft State Strategic Plan. An examination of innovation districts as an economic growth strategy suggests state investments in key industries should be strongly linked to the kinds of smart-growth places where they can flourish.
Dunellen and East Orange can each use the Transit Village designation in a way that best serves residents – to increase residential growth (and, presumably, residential values) near a station that should be starting to see higher ridership rates, or to expand employment opportunities and building its commercial tax base.
Traffic congestion and per-capita GDP both rise in desirable urban areas. Smart-growth development policies could enhance productivity further by helping to reduce congestion.
Cycling or walking to work is a small but important phenomenon in New Jersey. Between 2000 and 2010 there has been a large increase in the number of people who cycle to work. Residents of bike friendly communities enjoy both health and economic benefits, and NJDOT and a growing number of municipalities are implementing Complete Streets policies to foster biking and walking.