INSIDE LiveXChange

Business Facilities LiveXchange is an invitation-only event for corporate executives responsible for choosing a new location for their companies’ next facility. Delegates meet with senior economic developers from across North America; attend seminars, workshops, and think tanks led by experts in the field of relocation and expansion; and network with other corporate executives faced with the same corporate growth challenges. This month, we preview another high-profile speaker who will be making a presentation at one of our 2008 LiveXchange seminars and workshops.

Last month, we profiled three of the guest speakers who will be making presentations at our LiveXchange event, which will take place this fall in California: Barry B. LePatner, Esq, founder of LePatner & Associates LLP and a recognized expert in the field of construction cost management; Brooks Rainwater, director of Local Relations at the American Institute of Architects (AIA), an authority on green building; and Brandi Hanback, managing director of Rockefeller Group’s Foreign Trade Zone Services, who served for 10 years as the executive director of the National Association of Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ).

This month, we want to introduce you to David Goldberg, communications director for Smart Growth America (SGA). Smart Growth America is a coalition of national, state and local organizations who work together to build a better way to plan and develop rural and metro areas, and municipalities.

The group is an advocate for historic preservation, farmland and open-space preservation, and neighborhood revitalization. It has more than 100 members, including leading national organizations focusing on affordable housing, environmental protection, social equity, and transportation policy, among other issues, as well as state, regional and local organizations working on behalf of their communities.

Goldberg is the author of the book, Choosing Our Community’s Future: A Citizen’s Guide to Getting the Most from Development, as well as the handbook, Rethinking the American Dream, used by journalists who cover planning issues. He has helped co-author Growing Cooler: The Evidence on Urban Development and Climate Change with the Urban Land Institute.

This year, Smart Growth America has turned its attention to the growing impact of climate change. Goldberg’s presentation at this year’s LiveXchange event will discuss how global warming, climate change and related energy concerns can and should be factored into development plans.

Goldberg’s LiveXchange presentation will be based in part on his recent testimony before Congress. In June, Goldberg testified before the House Select Committee on Global Warming and Energy Independence. His talk was entitled, Planning Communities for a Changing Climate-Smart Growth, Public Demand and Private Opportunity. Here are highlights:

The SGA director told the Houe committee that entirely green communities are possible today, using currently available technology. He also suggested that communities be developed around public transportation.

Goldberg discussed the ways in which smart growth principles can help reduce vehicle miles traveled, make more efficient use of resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These principles can be applied to rural, urban and suburban communities, he said, and they can create economic benefits when used to guide development.

Goldberg cited a 2007 poll SGA conducted in tandem with the National Association of Realtors, which revealed that more than one quarter of Americans favor development that reduces the need to drive.”With the rise in gas prices to over $4 a gallon, it’s likely these numbers [are] even higher [today],” he said.

Another SGA survey discovered that at least 50% of all automotive trips in metropolitan areas are three miles or less. The group is promoting the planning of what it calls “complete streets” to eliminate the necessity of these trips, such as the 350-mile bike path network recently created in Boulder, Colorado.

We look forward to these thought-provoking and informative presentations. For more information about our upcoming LiveXchange event, which will take place November 9-11, 2008.