News Brief

Smart Growth Corridor and Angola Township Win New Urbanist Awards

Two projects under development, one in Boston, Massachusetts, and one in Cabinda, Angola, were among the projects recognized in June at the fourteenth Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) in Providence, Rhode Island. CNU’s 2006 Charter Awards recognize work that demonstrates an understanding of urbanism and the principles embodied in the CNU charter. More information is online at www.cnu.org.

In collaboration with Boston-based Goody Clancy, four grassroots neighborhood organizations came together to capitalize on underused land along Boston’s Fairmount commuter line to plan a series of urban villages served by improved transit service. The Fairmount line has been in decline, serving only three stations in 2005 compared with 11 historically. Trains sped past some of Boston’s neighborhoods with the highest poverty rates, greatest dependence on public transit, and worst transit service. The planning team identified the potential for up to 5,000 new housing units and 700,000 ft2 (65,000 m2) of new and rehabilitated commercial space along the line. The corridor plan has spurred additional local planning and helped secure state commitments to add four new stations and enhance service along the line, according to CNU. Juror Linda Keane called the project “an excellent example of transit-oriented redevelopment investing systematically in neglected and deteriorated urban fabric.”

An increased international focus for the 2006 Charter Awards helped deliver an award to Cabinda, Angola, where the 655-acre (265 ha) Caio Verde development is establishing a new mixed-income, mixed-use township in a coastal area with natural areas in need of protection. In a region where unplanned communities often deplete natural resources and harm the native landscape, the plan for Caio Verde, created by Gary White & Associates of Pretoria, South Africa, creates a township for 35,000 people while channeling the built landscape around protected forests. The jury recognized the significance of a New Urbanist-influenced development in a country that is rebuilding following a devastating civil war.

Published July 9, 2006

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