Monthly Archives: December 2011
On Monday, January 9, 2012, the Health Commission will hold its annual meeting at the Lehigh County Government Center. The newly elected Northampton County Council members, along with the Lehigh County commissioners, will be present at this meeting. This is the perfect opportunity to speak out in support of the Bi-County Health Bureau which has been studied and proposed for the Lehigh Valley and is supported at the state level (October 17 2011 Health Commission Presentationfinal [final10-17]). All we need is support from both county councils to create the first bi-county health bureau in the state. This type of cooperation and partnership is indicative of joint ventures for which the Lehigh Valley is known and rewarded across the state. Please mark your calendar!
RenewLV is committed to promoting smart growth and smart governance to revitalize our core communities. That is our mission and that is what we hope to achieve for the Lehigh Valley. The Valley is experiencing a great deal of development, which is great news, but we want to make sure that we are developing wisely and growing in the right directions.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Smart Growth Network have compiled a list of 10 basic principles of smart growth that are proven approaches in creating successful communities:
- Mix land uses
- Take advantage of compact building design
- Create a range of housing opportunities and choices
- Create walkable neighborhoods
- Foster distinctive, attractive communities with a strong sense of place
- Preserve open space, farmland, natural beauty, and critical environmental areas
- Strengthen and direct development toward existing communities
- Provide a variety of transportation choices
- Make development decisions predictable, fair, and cost-effective
- Encourage community and stakeholder collaboration in development decisions
Numerous organizations throughout the Lehigh Valley hold these principles as main focuses of their activities. Through Renew’s partnerships with organizations like the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation, the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, LANta, the Wildlands Conservancy, and many others, RenewLV is trying to knit these principles into the culture of the Lehigh Valley. That is why we have partnered with the Lehigh Valley Sustainability Consortium to ensure these ideals are part of any development project here.
As residents of this great area, you know how unique and resilient the Lehigh Valley is. But there is always room for improvement. Through the recently awarded $3.4 million HUD grant, this area will be getting a major boost through projects and partnerships over the next three years. As part of the Lehigh Valley Sustainability Consortium overseeing this grant, RenewLV wants to hear from you, the residents of the Lehigh Valley. In the upcoming months we will be hosting events and opportunities to enable your voice and opinions to be heard in order to guide these projects. Visit our website and click the “Join Us” button to stay up-to-date on the grant projects and opportunities for the community to speak out. Bring these smart growth principles to the Lehigh Valley to make it an even better place to live.
Sure, the Marcellus Shale drilling isn’t happening here in the Lehigh Valley, but the effects will certainly be felt statewide both economically and environmentally. This is a hot-button issue in Pennsylvania right now. Even if the drilling isn’t occurring right in the Lehigh Valley, it is still every Pennsylvanian’s responsibility to become educated about the issue as an informed and active citizen.
PennEnvironment, a state-wide citizen-based environmental advocacy organization will be in Bethlehem on December 6th for a Marcellus Shale Citizen Organizer Training Session. Their goal: “to train 1,000 Pennsylvanians with the skills they need to protect their communities from gas drilling. Whether you’re new to activism or been [sic] on the front lines of the Marcellus Shale, this training will help you take the fight to the next level.” Below are the details of the training:
WHAT: Lehigh Valley Marcellus Shale Citizen Organizer Training
WHERE: Unitarian Universalist Church of the Lehigh Valley, 424 Center St, Bethlehem, PA
WHEN: Tuesday, December 6, 6-9 p.m.
RenewLV is not a sponsor of this event, but strongly encourages citizens to become educated to participate in their local communities. If you are interested in this event or want more information regarding PennEnvironment, visit: https://secure3.convio.net/engage/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=3865.