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Archive for the ‘New York State’ Category

Just finished my “State of Upstate” land use, environment, and natural resources presentation. I am such an optimist! And what’s more, I think I really believe it! I did stop short of suggesting that Upstate NY is going to be the locus of the next great wave of U.S. population migration (i.e., on the receiving end) when the American Southeast and Midwest become as hot and dry as the Southwest. Some people are starting to say that though…

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Should state & local government be committed to protecting long-term environmental values? Even in the midst of the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression, NY State residents respond like this. I’m impressed. The survey was sponsored by CaRDI – Cornell’s Community and Regional Development Institute and conducted in Jan 2011.

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Wikimedia Commons image by Matt H.WadeI was asked to speak at a conference on the topic of “Land Use, Environment, and Natural Resources,” a very broad subject even if it is focused on Upstate New York. That would be “upstate” defined as everything north of the NYC metro area. In other words, what is the current status of land use, environment, and natural resources for almost the entire State of New York? In 20 minutes. I have taken on that challenge (?)  and will be making my presentation next Wednesday in Syracuse.

To prepare for this talk, I spoke with land use and environmental planners from various parts of the state over the last few weeks. What’s going on in your area? I thought I’d hear some frustration in the voices of those I called, given the state and local government budget challenges – but I did not. There is really a lot going on, and grant money is keeping the planning engine running for now at least. The only downside I detected is that there is too much work for too few people at many agencies and organizations. I have decided that the thrust of my talk will be “Innovation and Resourcefulness in a Time of Austerity.” I will post a few of the interesting examples of innovative land planning that I have found.

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