Useful Community Development: What's New

Here are the most recent important changes to our website, including new articles, visitor questions, and editors' answers. You'll also find links to significantly revised pages and time-sensitive or short items we want to bring to your attention. Sometimes we also add short items of interest, especially time-sensitive notes about conferences, webinars, or seasons.

How Redevelopment Can Re-Use Land Creatively

Redevelopment of vacant, abandoned, or underutilized land can bring new hope and more income to a neighborhood or city. Here we introduce the potential.

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Transect Based Design Guidelines Can Substitute for Zoning

Viewing cross-sections of a town or metro area, proponents of transect theory want to see this concept replace traditional zoning.

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Use Community Development Evaluation to Inspire Hope in Your Group

Community development evaluation can energize your organization in new directions as you suddenly see your next challenge come into focus.

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Why Getting Building Setbacks Right Attracts People to a Neighborhood

Learn how building setbacks create and reinforce the character of a neighborhood, whether residential or commercial. See our commercial district examples.

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Useful Community Development Newsletter Archive

The Useful Community Development Plus newsletter archive contains back issues featuring original articles and resources for neighborhood and city leaders.

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How to Fundraise for Your Neighborhood Group

Discovering how to fundraise for a neighborhood association while having fun together and supporting your mission will keep your group strong.

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Block Units Effective in Building Community

Block units organize residents of a very small area into a simple structure to address problems or head them off. We tell you how.

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School Site Selection Should Coordinate Closely with Community Plans

School site selection should be integrated with community planning. Large schools in the wrong place add to traffic, poor parental involvement, and sprawl.

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Charrette Explanation and Benefits

The charrette is a technique from architecture often used in planning. This page helps you succeed in design collaboration between professionals and residents.

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Winter Newsletter Ideas for Neighborhoods and Homeowner Associations

For fresh winter newsletter ideas or prompts for your social media during colder months, this page provides some useful cues.

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CPTED, Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, Has Merit

The theory of CPTED, also known as environmental crime prevention, emphasizes fighting crime by using design principles. We say where we agree or disagree.

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Beach Nourishment Programs Come With Advantages and Disadvantages

Beach nourishment programs transfer sand from an offsite location to replenish an area torn apart by erosion or storm. This page helps you evaluate costs.

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Nine Root Causes of Urban Sprawl

Causes of urban sprawl include an appetite for larger private houses and insensitivity to the consequences. Weak regional controls add to the problem.

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Conservation Easements Save Open Space and Serve Multiple Goals

Learn how to use conservation easements to preserve open space, slow climate change, and curb urban sprawl, water pollution, and species extinction.

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Getting Answers to Your Community's Housing Questions--Or Your Own

Answers to visitor-submitted housing questions, whether oriented to rental or ownership, are provided in one convenient location.

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