2011 Year-End: Accomplishments

2011 was another great year for CNU and New Urbanism:

Our 19th annual Congress in Madison, Wisconsin drew 1,100 attendees from throughout the United States and countries from every corner of the world. Many veterans of the movement called CNU 19 our best Congress to date as we shared ideas, confronted our skeptics, and experienced a city that performs better because of New Urbanism.

Greater attention is being paid to the CNU/ITE Designing Walkable Urban Thoroughfares manual as the rulebook on designing connected, context-sensitive streets that provide maximum utility and lasting value. The City of El Paso passed a resolution in May to adopt the manual as a recommended practice, following the State of Texas’ earlier adoption of the guidelines. Which cities and states will follow El Paso’s lead next year?

With major support from the Ford Foundation, CNU’s Highways-to-Boulevards initiative has gone national. Our efforts in New Orleans to tear down the Claiborne Expressway and bring new life to Claiborne Avenue are moving forward, and work has begun in adding our voice to the campaign to decommission the Sheridan Expressway in the Bronx.

Current federal housing finance regulations discriminate against the mixing of uses in residential buildings with a commercial component. CNU is leading a coalition of organizations in calling to raise and/or eliminate the restrictions on the mixing of commercial and residential space with our FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Reform initiative. With CNU’s reform initiative, FHA, HUD, Fannie and Freddie have an opportunity to jumpstart much-needed economic growth and allow investment to respond to market demand.

CNU’s Rainwater-in-Context initiative— one of our newest initiatives—works to institute rainwater management practices that strengthen and complement urbanism at all scales. The benefits behind dense, walkable urbanism - as promoted in the Charter - are enhanced by high-performance rainwater solutions that work to protect watersheds and strengthen the inherent environmental performance of urbanism.

CNU premiered new membership levels and benefits this year, making it easier and more affordable for people to get active in the movement. Individual and group memberships allow everyone from veteran new urbanist professionals to interested community leaders just learning about CNU to become a member at the level that’s right for them.

Contribute to the future of CNU and participate in our 2011 year-end drive.