PHILADELPHIA -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced that Greensburg in Westmoreland County; Marietta in Lancaster County; Newtown in Bucks County; and Northampton County will receive technical assistance through the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program.
EPA has set aside $750,000 to fund sustainability audits for 56 communities in 26 states in 2012. The funds will be paid to private-sector contractors who will work with community officials to compile a list of areas that need attention. These technical experts will help develop solutions to improve the local economy, the environment, and quality of life. Some examples may include improving pedestrian access and safety, incorporating green infrastructure, or conducting an economic and fiscal health assessment.
Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities is a project of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities among EPA, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). The interagency collaboration coordinates federal investments in infrastructure, facilities, and services to get better results for communities and use taxpayer money more efficiently. The partnership is helping communities across the country create more housing choices, make transportation more efficient and reliable, reinforce existing investments, and support vibrant and healthy neighborhoods that attract businesses.
Today’s announcement marks the second round of Building Blocks assistance. Thirty-two other communities were named in the first round in April 2011. EPA selected the 56 communities from 350 applicants through a competitive process in consultation with HUD, DOT, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
More information on the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities: http://www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/buildingblocks.htm
More information on the Partnership for Sustainable Communities: http://www.sustainablecommunities.gov
More information on the New Partners for Smart Growth conference: http://www.newpartners.org