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The Role Natural Capital Plays in Keeping our Villages Vibrant

by Guest Blogger | Sep 26th, 2016 | Leave a comment

Written by Guest Blogger Shannon H. Rogers, Ph.D. Assistant Professor/Ecological Economist at Plymouth State University.

Harken back to your Economics 101 class and you may recall the concepts of built capital and financial capital as major pieces of the basic economic equation for producing goods and services.  Others may be familiar with human capital and even the concept of social capital (one of my favorites especially when looking at the connection between social capital and walkability –  but that may be another blog post!).  All of these types of capital are key to thriving communities across the Globe.   In this post, I’d like to discuss one type of capital that isn’t always considered but arguably provides many of the benefits we enjoy in New Hampshire’s vibrant villages—that is Natural Capital.

new-castle
New Castle

A quick definition of natural capital is:  the assets, such as ecosystems, that humans rely upon for many of our needs, including clean water, food, and carbon capture.   These assets provide a flow of goods and services for all of us called ecosystem services.

Many of us in the field of ecological economics study how we use and value our natural capital.  Ecological economics is still developing, but it has already shown its potential for helping us think about solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing society.  Have you ever come in from a wonderful day at the ocean or the lake or in the mountains and said, “wow, I really benefitted from New Hampshire’s natural capital today?”  If you haven’t, don’t worry, you are not alone. Natural capital is often hidden or taken for granted in the background, and because there haven’t been many ways to value it and incorporate it into decision making, it hasn’t always been considered in our decision making.

We are fortunate to be awash in natural capital here in New Hampshire, and it is arguably part of the New Hampshire advantage.  Some of us are studying how we use natural capital in the region and how we can better incorporate it into our environmental decision making.  My research group at Plymouth State University’s Center for the Environment has been looking at this very question in partnership with colleagues at UNH and Dartmouth with support from the National Science Foundation through New Hampshire’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (NH EPSCoR).  One new study we just published looked at the value of conservation land in removing pollutants, such as Nitrogen, before it reaches the impaired Great Bay Estuary.  Yes, you read that correctly, our natural capital (that is forests and watersheds) can help remove some pollutants as part of natural ecosystem functions and may help us save some money compared to building up engineered methods for purifying water and other services.

mirror-lake
Mirror Lake

Flood mitigation is another benefit from natural capital we might have in our communities.  You may have heard of the valuable things wetlands can do for humans:  holding back floodwater is one of those.  For instance, a 1-acre wetland, 1-foot-deep can hold approximately 330,000 gallons of water (see Purdue Extension) and is often more cost effective than building a large flood control dam.  This is not to mention the habitat and water purification services wetlands also provide as well as the copious recreational benefits our natural landscapes can provide, something we would call co-benefits and have tried to understand in another, recent paper.

All of these services contribute to the vibrancy of our villages, so the next time you are thinking about a planning decision in one of our wonderful villages, I suggest taking a second to ask about the natural capital implications.  You’ll probably be happy you did –  because not only will you save money  but there likely will be many co-benefits for you and your fellow citizens to enjoy.   Let me know how it goes!

gilmanton
Caution: Outrageous views in Gilmanton.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All photos by S. Rogers.

Shannon H. Rogers, Ph.D
Assistant Professor/Ecological Economist
Center for the Environment
Plymouth State University
[email protected]

 

Thank you Shannon!

Have a blog You would like to share? Share it with us! [email protected]

Walkability 101.4

by Michelle McDonald | Jul 10th, 2016 | Leave a comment

Congratulations, you’ve made it to the final lesson on Walkability 101!

We’ve been discovering paths toward walkability while reading Jeff Speck’s Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America One Step at a Time. Let’s recap. Walkability (anywhere) requires comfortable and safe pedestrians. Comfort and safety motivate one to walk, especially if the walk is useful (like walking to the post office). What places are you excited to walk? Take a second, remember. Are those places interesting?

 

ARTventures public art display sparks conversation on the street.
ARTventures public art display in Nashua sparks conversation on the street.

The Interesting Walk| Summertime in New England is a perfect time to walk. You walk to join your friends picnicking at the park. You enjoy your café au lait at the coffee shop while watching others stroll past. You and your neighbor seek shade under a street tree on the sidewalk while chatting. An interactive streetscape inspires and engages. Here, people share experiences. Here, niches of community culture blossom.

 

For stories and inspiration about walkable communities (and the steps they are taking) look for sites like these: Walkability Case Studies, Walkable.org and Feetfirst.org.

 

This bench in Franklin is a seat & a place to drink some coffee with a friend.
This bench in Franklin is a seat & a place to drink some coffee with a friend.

Throughout his book, Speck explains reasons why components of walkability- like light rail or “green” buildings- fail at creating walkability when considered independently. These ideas support walkability, however, they must be considered in context. For example, bike racks at an airport only accessible by highway probably won’t encourage anyone to bike to his next flight. Likewise, not everything will work for every place nor is every place destined to be just like NYC ( ie. most walkable City 2015).

Build walkability by starting with what is attainable, logistically and culturally. Just as Speck says, “pick your winners.” Incorporating one basic component, like safety, will lead to more opportunities for everyone and more interesting walks.

If you and others in your community want walkability to happen, participate in discussions, volunteer and be involved. Seek advice from other NH towns and cities, like New Boston or Keene, that have adopted walkability principles. Refer to resources like Southern NH Planning Commission’s Walkability Toolkit for hints, too! Outdated zoning regulations can be changed to meet the changing character of any community.

You can spark the change.

Get out there, New Hampshire. Summer brings community fun and the perfect opportunity to notice if where you walk is truly walkable or not. While you’re out there, pick up a copy of Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time. We recommend it. The mystery of walkability can be solved by returning the focus to the machines we know best—humans.

What is your community’s walkscore? Find out HERE.

 

 

Walkability: 101.3

by Michelle McDonald | Mar 15th, 2016 | Leave a comment

Welcome back! As you know, walkability has a lot of moving parts.

In Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America One Step at a Time author Jeff Speck urges us to reconsider how we interact with the street. Instead of defaulting to the car-crowded, congested strip malls, we can create safe and interactive streetscapes where the pedestrian fits – and fits comfortably. Speck notes, evolutionary psychologists tell us how all animals seek two things: prospect and refuge.1 Increasing comfort and finding the balance between open and enclosed space of a street, shapes sense of place, community identify and the local economy. In what ways can your community get comfy?

Concord 017
image source: Art Concord

Think Main Street| Communities across the country have been investing in “Main Street” programs that revitalize downtown arteries. Sidewalks or crosswalks, pocket parts or community squares, street-side shopping or outdoor dining: there are many options that can bring people together and ensure investment pay-off. According to a PlaceEconomics study on the Main Street Iowa Program, local governments in Iowa gained $10.8 million in revenue every year in property taxes from their Main Street rehabilitation efforts. Check out the Main Street initiatives in New Hampshire like those in Rochester, Ossippee and Concord.

Celebrate History| In New England, we often see colonial architecture and enchanting covered bridges. Why preserve those structures? Historic preservation can attract tourists, create jobs, provide tax incentives and be a great way to relish in your community’s uniqueness. Visit sources like NH Preservation Alliance and NH Division of Historical Resources to discover how your community can support its historic resources for both tourists and locals to enjoy. These active agencies (and Plan NH members!) provide information about grants, historic district tax credits, registering historic districts and more.

bs2bgPlant Trees| Like we mentioned in Walkability 101.2, more street activity means more cautious drivers. Street trees are additional objects that alert drivers and create a buffer for pedestrians. Trees provide a variety of other benefits. Economically, they increase property value. They reduce traffic noise and provide invaluable natural services by reducing air and water pollutants. In fact 1 tree can absorb 48 lbs of CO2 per year, and for every 5% tree cover added to a community, storm water is reduced by 2%. And, BONUS: trees provide psychological benefits by reducing stress and evoking feelings of happiness.

Next time you’re walking at home or visiting another community, notice your place within the built environment. What buildings, sidewalks, trees or opportunities are or aren’t present? Reflect.

Do you feel comfortable?

Stay tuned for the last session Walkability 101. Until then here are additional resources…

Project for public spaces

Main Street Preservation

1 Speck, 213.

Interview with Plan NH Member: The City of Dover

by Michelle McDonald | Feb 26th, 2016 | Leave a comment

Member Highlight- Interview with The City of Dover| Chris Parker is in his 19th year of working for the City of Dover. After working in various roles he was named City Planner in 2007 and serves as Assistant Manager now. But, Chris doesn’t think of Dover as is work place, it’s his home. 

Plan NH: What’s been happening in town? What’s changed over your time here? Dover_mural

CP: I have lived here for a long time. I don’t think about what has changed since 97, while working, but I look at what’s changed since I’ve been a kid. The community volunteerism and engagement have been the same [in a good way]. But, there is more opportunity and more diversity now–diverse community in economics and homes. We have the Liberty Mutuals as well as the Mom & Pop shops. We have the “McMansions” and unique apartments in the mill. And, over the past 5 years, people have embraced multi-family housing, and have embraced that housing being on top of coffee shops and businesses.

Dover has been leveraging the market and bridging the gaps, and has made decisions that took hold in 2007 chapter master plan, to embrace the downtown. We recognize the historical assets and reinforce that downtown is the way and where to build. We promote the idea that if you provide opportunity for people to live downtown, you will provide a lot of opportunity.

Some odd stats, Dover has more mass transit opportunities than anywhere in the state. Before they completed the Downeaster between Portland and Boston, Dover was the only station directly downtown surrounded by full services and attractions. I’m glad my predecessors fought for the station.

We encourage citizen leadership and civic engagement on regional and state level. We do a local engagement series in the fall to involve people with the municipality and on an economic level.

We don’t want to be Portsmouth or other neighboring communities, but looked at what they have and thought about what could happen in Dover.

Plan NH: What else makes your community dynamic and vibrant?

CP: We are unique with high quality amenities. And, there is a very strong sense of community and pride of the downtown. People like how it works. There is diversity in types of business, and there could always be more and more that are different. People like using the downtown, where you can buy a hammer and milk. We have figured out a way to have a tourism draw and a vibrant restaurant scene. And, have a reality check that you can go to the grocery store while downtown.

Plan NH: We have heard from a lot of people, Dover is transforming in a positive way. What would you say helped Dover transform from the old to the new?

CP: There is a very thoughtful, progressive demographic here. One benefit in [Dover’s] planning community is we have an open-minded constituency. People aren’t afraid of density in downtown or Accessory Dwelling Units or electric vehicle charging stations.

Plan NH: We noticed recently you tweeted, calling for opinion of transportation options from community members. What feedback did you get?

CP: We got about 150 responses with cohesive answers. A lot of drivers deal with congestion downtown and congestion at exit 7. The most outstanding aspects of the survey were the very low response on who uses the bus, but the fact people applauded having the bus and are willing to pay for it.

Plan NH: What about the renovation of the mills? How has that impacted community? There are apartment buildings and restaurants. We even noticed Dell. What was the before and after like?Dover Mills

CP: The mill life-cycle is an interesting concept. In the 1820’s it was an economic engine of one sort. In 1943, the City took control of it until the 1980’s. We looked at it from a vibrancy perspective, and thought the only way to have vibrant downtown is to have people living downtown. We looked at density and decided working parameters were needed in the downtown. There is so much character there. The mills have commercial potential, but commercial spaces don’t tend to pay for themselves. If you are a commercial business owner, landlords subsidize it. Mill owner can keep Dell there by offsetting rent cost balance using the economies of scale.

Plan NH: What challenges are faced within the City?

CP: One of the biggest is demographic shift. People who grew up here, who want the past, have different expectations of the community. Also, we face the opioid challenge in the community, like state and federal.

One challenge of being the oldest community in the state is that we don’t have much undeveloped land left. Most parcels have been through development once and will be redeveloped. Pro or con, it’s a challenge.

Also it is challenging maintaining the diversity. We don’t want all mobile homes and we don’t want all Mom & Pop shops. We want diversity, but the market drives so much. We want Dover to remain attractive and affordable.

Plan NH: What advice could you offer to other NH mill towns?

CP: Keep in mind that the shell of the building is most important part. What you see is the active mill, what’s inside is economic. You should be encouraging the adaptive reuse of the mills. There are things that prevent adaptive reuse, like safety, but you need to keep an open mind and relax density requirements. It pays off by adding more people and lowering the development cost, and it gets the tax development increase.

You need to help provide affordable housing. Someone needs to be able to go through all of the “home-changes” in one community. A lot of people in the mills are not fresh out of college they are the adults who had a house and now have downsized.

Plan NH: Is Dover planning for change over the next decades? If yes how?

CP: The biggest way is to continually update and review the Master Plan and Strategic Plan. We constantly keep our longer plan in mind. Also, we try to keep a flat infrastructure budget, keeping our roads maintained and not having financial spikes as we put out fires. Financially, the exception right now is the plan for a new high school. Continually planning long-range helps the impact because the plan is constantly being reviewed.

Plan NH: What would you recommend if someone were to visit Dover? What cultural and social assets are there to visit?

CP: I would tell people to park and go downtown. I think you’ll be able to see something you like. I would tell them to go to William Pond outside of town. More diversity in Dover: there is plenty of rural. The conservation commission does a great job protecting resources. Their work reinforces the importance in concentrating development, much of the rural portion of the community has been persevered.

What does it mean to you to be a Plan NH member? I think Plan NH is a great envoy that the built environment impacts the natural and vice versa. It offers educational opportunities and advocacy opportunities for people to learn about the value of the built environment and mix uses in the “village.” Also, the people in the group are very accessible and happy to talk about issues at hand.

What would you like to continue to see for Plan NH? Plan needs to continue to broaden its appeal. I would like to see APA partnerships or with OEP, and form partnership with other organizations. I would like to continue to see [Plan NH] forge relationships with other natural collaborators. And, be proud of what it does.

What would you like to see for the State? The state needs to invest in statewide planning activities. Due to changing demographic and volatility of the economy, we need to have strong statewide planning advocacy.

streetview

Now, check my interview with Dover resident, Tina: HERE.

My Day as a Designer

by Michelle McDonald | Jan 18th, 2016 | Leave a comment

A Discovery|  I noticed the flier while perfecting my Joe at a coffee shop. Attend an introductory permaculture design course! With The Resilience HUB from Portland ME. This is it, I thought, this is my chance! Maybe I’ll design something… like a rain garden!  So, for two November Saturdays in Eliot, ME at a Bed & Breakfast and private residence, I eagerly waited to draw a beautiful design

The class met in a cozy, rustic house, equipped with a wood stove. Here, our class absorbed permaculture history, like how in the 1970’s, Permanent-Agriculture “Permaculture” concepts developed. And how, amazingly enough, the permaculture methodology was being created simultaneously yet separately  by Australians Bill Mollison & David Holmgren and Japanese Masanubo Fukuoka. Permaculture embraces ecology and is grounded by its ethics – Earth Care, People Care and Fair Share.

Permaculture involves using existing assets shared among people, plants, animals and non-living things. It inspires you to recognize patterns found in nature, and encourages you to mimic the beneficial ones. Permaculture aims to harvest a yield from the efficient, mutually beneficial interactions. All of this should occur while using resources most efficiently and increasing the benefit for the entire system.

The Class| 

Regardless of the subject, our class celebrated one theme continuously: diversity. The B&B owners (clients of the HUB and pupils of the class) demonstrated their diversity love-affair with their enchanting 5 acre property. They guided us through the site, introducing us to their goats and chickens, cats and dogs. We meandered below white pines, along hillside gardens and among a congregation of oaks. We handled herbs and rejoiced in the soothing smell of lavender.

The owners not only envision their home being a B&B. They dream of a community gathering space filled with eager families learning how to forage in an edible forest. They imagine the renovated barn, busy with neighbors enjoying homemade pizza at community movie night.

The owners recognized the need to design the property to best use its bounty and beauty, while saving them energy and time in caring for it. Here is where we came in.

Our class assessed which spaces had present and anticipated human activity for the growth of the B&B. We reenacted daily walks from the main house to the chicken coop then to compost pile. And, the occasional strolls into the patch of woods. We learned where the last snow melted and where the sun travels both during summer and winter. We observed and pondered these spots. We considered how patterns— the sun, microclimates and wind among many others—do and could affect these spots.

Zone mapping from a Resilience HUB project, courtesy of HUB

On personal maps we transcribed all activity into zones. Zone 0 being self/house, Zone 1 visited every day and so on until wild, barely visited Zone 5 which may not appear on every property. Permaculture designers pay particular attention to zones to carefully consider where travel occurs on a site   – and why. “Permaculture focuses less on the objects themselves than on the careful design and the relationships among them —interconnections—that will create a healthy, sustainable whole” (Gaia’s Garden, T. Hemmingway). My experience in November, ended with our class of novice permaculturalisits (very good ones, I might add) giving design suggestions to the B&B owners. No matter the novelty, our suggestions were valid, useful and creative.

Among many the lessons I took from the course, one has stuck with me; if we start with what we have and integrate, rather than segregate our resources, we build capacity. We can build capacity with the relationships between all moving parts– of an ecosystem or a community or anything, really.

We can extend this lesson far beyond the garden gate. Perhaps this is why the meaning of permaculture has been transforming from “permanent-agriculture” to “permanent-culture.” Maybe we can all be permaculture designers, if we look at our yards, homes, communities and even ourselves, holistically.

A Lesson|  By the end, I understood that I wasn’t going to design a pretty picture. Permaculture is not about drawing or planning a specific thing. Permaculture is a toolbox, a lens through which you can look at a combination of relationships and discover ways to make everything self-sustaining… and better.

Isn’t this what we want for community development and planning? We don’t plan for one building, even if it is a marvel, to remedy economic challenges or mitigate storm water run-off. Likewise we don’t expect one thing, whether a building or garden, to improve the well-being of people. We are continually affected by a combination of factors and relationships among people, place, plants and more. All from which comes the opportunity to learn, adapt and appreciate.

PS. I think you should check out permacultureprinciples.com during your coffee break.

Interested in the B&B? Search for them on AirBnb.

Walkability 101.1

by Michelle McDonald | Nov 18th, 2015 | Leave a comment

You follow the sidewalk. It ends. You want a coffee from the across the street. No crosswalk. Cars zip past. You scurry—phew, you made it! You grab a coffee and wait. Yay, space! You can dart again… hoping you don’t spill your coffee. We’ve all been there.

A walk is just a walk, right? Well, that’s not always the case. Your walk could be:

1. Useful 2. Safe 3. Comfortable 4. Interesting and place you and other people first.

In Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America One Step at a Time, Jeff Speck explores walkability and why communities that appropriately use its principles have bustling cores. Spoiler alert: walkability doesn’t only work in large cities– any town center can benefit. Let’s break down items 1-4.

Useful| Sidewalks and crosswalks are useful and give pedestrians places to walk. However, if there isn’t a destination, people might not use them. A walk should mix uses with a balance of and between activities. Walking to greenspace, a coffee shop, the post office and restaurants in the same area provides excitement andStreetview6 economic value.

Increase utility of a walk, think creatively about parking. Parking can often make-or-break downtown visits. Too many spaces? Create a destination; energize a spot with an art display or temporary vendor. Too few spaces? Orient the parking to maximize space. Speck also notes the importance of collaboration between businesses who share parking areas or private lots. Free parking isn’t really free — someone somewhere pays. And, when spaces remain vacant in empty downtowns, someone still pays.

Marrying other transportation types to walking can also benefit a community. Buses, light rails, subways and bike lanes can help enhance walkability because they take individuals to destinations. As we like to say, they provide options for getting about. In any case, non-car transportation options must meet the needs of people and community before it can be truly helpful. Neighborhoods can be walkable without these options, but walkable cities depend on them.

Like Speck mentions throughout his book, cars are fine but put people first and cars in their place. By doing so, your community will be recharged and open to a new world of possibilities. Changes will take time, energy and money—but if this is your community’s shared vision, it will be worth it. Stay tuned…

Some resourcewalkingdwntwns: Jeff Speck Ted Talk, Boston WalkUp case Study, General walkability sources,Small towns vs cities, Parking problems/solutions resource

Planning for the People: Placemaking

by Robin LeBlanc | Sep 30th, 2015 | Leave a comment

 

Imagine somewhere you love to visit at home or on vacation. You dream about strolling on that sidewalk bustling with activity from the local coffee shops and bicyclists’ parking. You smile thinking about your neighborhood park with its swing sets, community murals and the summer lemonade stand. These may be examples of placemaking, or as we like to think of it, human-scale planning that creates a sense of place. No matter the location, these places evoke feelings of safety, comfort and creativity.

Placemaking is a new concept for planning that makes people the priority—instead of cars. Additionally, this multidimensional planning is grassroots, collaborative and visionary. Public space design at human-scale is accessible and allows multiple modes of entry. At human-scale, surrounding buildings support its culture. The result: A useful, comfortable and social space.

Before your community plans a new project, create a vision. Start small by testing public spaces you wish to see change. For example, try using existing buildings and underused parks or parking lots to hold public markets, craft fairs or concerts. The projects may succeed or fail, but regardless, testing the space for activities can benefit the community by sparking ingenuity AND preventing expense if the activity does not work. As your community moves forward, remember these human-scale public spaces should serve more than one purpose; bring a diverse population together for a variety of planned or unplanned events. Here are low-cost ways to embrace underused and uncomfortable spaces:

By starting with small spaces and incremental changes, your community will continually shape its vision making it more resilient against economic, demographic and environmental fluctuations.

Does your community already have many public spaces that encompass principles of placemaking? Has your community implemented human-scale design that makes you feel safe, happy and creative?

Please share your story with us!

Learn more:  http://www.pps.org/ and http://uli.org/

 

Does where you live support aging in place or community?

by Robin LeBlanc | Dec 09th, 2014 | Leave a comment

We recently attended the Tri-State (ME, NH, VT) Roundtable on Aging.  Maine is certainly light-years ahead of most states in addressing the issue.  (Maine)  Speaker of the House Mark Eves opened the day and  told us about the Maine Aging Initiative – one of collective impact (although he did not use that term) in intent as “Maine’s business, finance, health care and higher education leaders working with aging advocates .. find innovative ways to help older adults age in in place and build a stronger workforce.” (from program description).

The morning continued with three viewpoints about the economic impacts and challenges of an aging population in our rural states.  Not only is money spent differently (and in many cases, less of it), there is a growing awareness of the impact on our local governments – fewer dollars to support them, as well as fewer people to run them.

(Will these smaller towns fade away?  We think not.  But they will need to change their governance structures, and rethink their places/roles in their regions. )

But back to aging in place, or aging in community.  What does this mean?  Aging in place means being able to stay in your own home as you get older and your needs change.  Aging in community means that even if you don’t stay in the home where you raised your family, or have lived since you were born, you can still stay in the same town as you age.

Keep in mind, this applies to all of us – it is not about them, or, as one of my favorite editorialists would say, The Other.

What do we in our towns and neighborhoods need to be thinking about to support our aging friends, family and – yep, selves?

This is new territory for us.  Never before on the planet have we had such a great percentage of folks past their “prime” years.  While many in their mid-sixties and even seventies do not consider themselves elderly, or even old, at some point we are all going to face mobility issues, sight and/or hearing issues, and/or even cognitive challenges that go with getting older.

This is, indeed a double-whammy.  Not for everyone, but many will experience both age and disability.  (Today, almost 20% of the US population is considered “disabled” in some way.  Couple that with aging, and one estimate has that by 2030 – not far away – fully a third of the population will be over 65 or have a disability – or both.)

Certainly, there are many, many approaches to addressing this, and there is lots of good work going on right here in the Granite State.

But it’s the built environment and its role that has not been tackled yet.  That’s where Plan NH, and its Vibrant Villages NH initiative, come in.   This is what we will be exploring for the foreseeable future.

Community design.  Viable options for getting people around.  Choices for living spaces (eg, for downsizing, for accommodating challenges).  Having amenities nearby.  These are all elements of a healthy community anyway – now we will also need to focus on those that support and aging population.

Look at where YOU live or work.  How easy will it be to be there in 10 or 20 years? From no steps (inside and out) to smooth, wide (well-lit) sidewalks to wide doorways to accommodate a wheelchair … there are many things to consider.  How would you get groceries, your hair cut, to a doctor or dentist when you no longer drive?

We have a lot to learn about this, and we will be doing so in the months ahead and sharing with planners, designers and developers as well as municipal folks themselves.  And you, Dear Reader. Stay tuned.

 

 

Is YOUR community ready for active transportation?

by Robin LeBlanc | May 20th, 2014 | Leave a comment

Healthy Eating Active Living NH (HEAL NH) continues its series on Active Transportation with a workshop addressing readiness.  It will focus on teaching attendees

  • how to assess whether your community is ready for active transportation projects
  • at what level are community members ready/not ready
  • how to bring partners into your network.

The workshop will also look at real world examples of how  readiness assessments can be or could have been implemented in communities.

The session is June 3, 9am-noon, at the NH Department of Transportation located at 7 Hazen Drive – Room 114, Concord (J.O. Morton Building): https://goo.gl/maps/Wgr2b.

The session is free and open to the public, but an RSVP is required to hold reserve your seat. Lunch will be provided at 11:30am and there will be optional networking until 1pm.

Please RSVP (and direct any questions) to Nik Coates at [email protected], or 415-4263.

 

Presenters:

  • Scot Foster: Physical Activity Coordinator, NH Department of Health and Human Services
  • Nicholas Coates (Nik): Active Living Coordinator, Foundation for Healthy Communities

 

Schedule:

  • 9:00am-9:50am: Using the community readiness assessment tool to determine your community’s readiness for active transportation
  • 10:00am-10:30am: Mock interviews
  • 10:30am-11:30am: Examples of how community readiness assessments worked or could have worked in NH communities
  • 11:30am: Lunch arrives
  • 11:30am-12:00pm: Q&A, Wrap Up
  • 12:00pm-1:00pm: Networking (optional)

 

Desired Outcomes:

  • Know how to use the community readiness assessment tool and have practiced using it.
  • Know how to identify who to interview in a community.
  • Know how to develop and implement a plan for a readiness assessment in a community.

Materials from the previous sessions here: http://www.healnh.org/index.php/active-transportation/active-transportation-training-series

If you are unable to make this session, but would like to participate in future active transportation learning opportunities, please note these additional opportunities through HEAL NH.

  • June 5: NH Planners Association Annual Conference at UNH Durham Complete Streets How Tow: Plenary and Breakout session – Registration at www.nhplanners.org
  • June 17, 10 a.m.-noon: Active Transportation Technical Assistance conference call with Nik Coates and Tim Blagden (Bike-Walk Alliance of NH) – 866-906-9888 / Participant Code 3974286
  • Additional sessions are currently being organized for the Summer and Fall and more details will follow in the coming weeks.