Eight Thematic Tracks

NEW for 2018, the New Partners for Smart Growth™Conference program will feature eight thematic tracks — each focusing on a set of topics strongly connected to timely community issues and challenges, with smart growth and equity as the threads woven between and throughout each track.

The 2018 program will allow participants to go deeper into a topic, while continuing to connect back to broader placemaking efforts with a multidisciplinary group of partners tackling community challenges. Each track will provide participants the opportunity to move through a series of connected sessions with a multidisciplinary peer cohort of practitioners that all leave with an implementation strategy, new tools, models and templates to integrate into their work.

Participants, as always, will be able to attend sessions across tracks – picking and choosing which topics and sessions will provide them the most value – based on their subject interests, experience level or what they want to take away from the conference to apply in their communities back home. Coordinated keynotes and networking activities will also be included throughout the program to ensure that participants are learning and networking with a broad, multidisciplinary national audience.

Sessions within each track are organized by session type. Learn more about session types.

View the full New Partners for Smart Growth™ Conference Program.

Thematic Track Descriptions

Building Capacity in Small Towns and Rural Communities

This track showcases how rural communities across the country are identifying and re-defining local assets and sense of place, and ultimately building capacity and leadership to create healthy, sustainable local economies.

“One Water” for Resilient Communities

This track takes a holistic approach to water resources and land-use planning that is both responsive and resilient to disruptive forces, changing demographics, and development decisions.

Adapting to a Changing Climate

This track outlines where the United States stands on climate change now and actions for the future – both in terms of mitigating the problem and adapting to its consequences.

Improving Transportation Accessibility and Connectivity

This track covers the status of transportation decisions and investments at all levels of government including emerging trends, exciting case studies, and improving first mile-last mile connectivity.

Designing Healthy Communities

This track considers strategies for overcoming social and economic inequities, addressing housing, practical tools to improve access to healthy environments, and success stories from local and state partnerships.

Creating Housing for Everyone

This track describes the current state of housing affordability and highlights promising case studies that point the way to diverse, equitable and affordable housing choices.

Planning and Designing Smart-Growth Communities

This track examines how smart growth is being implemented in rural, suburban and urban contexts, and unpack some of the emerging new trends based on equity concerns and technological innovations.

Inclusive Prosperity of People and Place

This track provides a multidisciplinary audience with a deeper dive into policies, practices, places and tools focused on creating inclusion and opportunity for diverse communities and their residents.

Session Type Definitions

Sessions within each track are organized by session type. Each track will include six sessions designed to provide context and outline fundamental issues, highlight emerging trends, explore a diversity of model projects and best practices, introduce innovative strategies and tools, feature financing strategies and perspectives, before concluding with a hands-on workshop to implement practical solutions to core challenges within the field.