RESHAPING FOR TOMORROW
The “new” model of a livable, walkable city with opportunities to live, work, and play is one we have been working on for a long time. Our projects focus on supporting livability goals. We work with the public sector, citizens, and developers to put together plans and projects that encourage efficient land use patterns that are desired by residents and employers – locating mixed income housing and a variety of jobs close to transit stations, for example; and supporting infill development in urbanized areas. Our economic development efforts address identifying the right kind of jobs to bring to a locality to match the desired employment and housing patterns.
Partnering with Sustain Our Planet, we have developed a Sustainable Cities Program to assist municipalities in evaluating development proposals for sustainable practices and design features and for the project’s potential greenhouse gas emissions. The Program provides regional and local governments with the opportunity to guide emissions reduction targets by creating land use and transportation plans aimed at greater efficiencies. We have a methodology to measure GHG emissions from new projects, and provide clients with a list of mitigating measures to be applied to comprehensive plans or land development plans. Once a project is built, it must be evaluated to see whether it actually fulfills the targeted reductions. Our methodology provides a means to monitor effectiveness of the measures used to reduce GHG emissions from a baseline forecast level.
The reversal of the movement toward
residential growth in the suburbs and greenfield development that dominated the last half of the 1900s is underway, and frequently called “smart growth”. This tag identifies the opportunities for energy efficiency, walkable communities, proximity of homes to jobs and shopping, and revival of urban places. Local neighborhood and comprehensive plans are frequently recognizing the need to support the construction of new housing at urban infill sites and around metrorail or transit stations. We have been involved in the planning and approvals of numerous projects that fit the smart growth definition – attractive residential or commercial buildings with pedestrian-friendly features, in buildings designed for energy-efficiency, and that favor the use of bicycles or transit over use of the private automobile. We have also assisted advocacy organizations such as Alexandrians Delivering smart growth Around Metro (ADAM) and the Northern Virginia Streetcar Coalition.
Creating plans and implementation strategies to revitalize downtowns and aging commercial corridors has been a major area of emphasis throughout our existence. We manage revitalization organizations (Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation, Old Town North Community Partnership), participate in teams of experts sent to communities throughout the United States to make recommendations (San Bernardino CA; Galveston TX; Ft. Wayne IN; Richmond VA). Our staff members have led revitalization planning efforts while previously employed in the public sector, for example, the King Street revitalization strategy in Alexandria, Virginia.
Municipalities are increasingly confronting the difficulty of retaining existing affordable/workforce housing units and developing new ones, as land prices go up, and formerly unappealing urban areas are rediscovered and become premium locations. We recently conducted a study to determine how much local jurisdictions add to the cost of a delivered new housing units through requests for proffers, voluntary contributions, impact fees, and development application fees. We also have a track record in identifying receiving sites for subsidized units, including scattered site public housing. We assist jurisdictions and developers to come to agreement for the provision of on-site affordable/workforce units in new developments.
We conduct the economic, social, housing, and employment impact analyses associated with the formal NEPA EIS process. Our analyses have been applied to varying projects, ranging from road and bridge construction, to new power plants, to closure and reuse of physical facilities resulting from Department of Defense actions.
Artemel & Associates has developed targeted tourism promotion strategies for a number of Convention and Visitors Associations. We have also examined tourism as a tool in urban revitalization. We also carry out analyses of potential visitation levels for proposed museums, and have conducted market studies for proposed (or desired) new conference centers.