Local, regional, and national groups that challenged and ultimately defeated the Disney Company’s proposed theme park in rural northern Virginia founded the Coalition for Smarter Growth in 1997. The groups determined the need to establish a regional organization dedicated to coordinating their joint efforts toward stopping the outer beltway and to promote a better way to grow in the Washington, D.C. region.
Today, our vision is a network of walkable, livable, transit-oriented communities, connected to a revitalized District of Columbia by an expanded network of high-capacity transit. The Piedmont Environmental Council, an IRS designated 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, serves as the Coalition’s fiscal agent, and provides legal and administrative support.
In January 2007, the Coalition for Smarter Growth completed a merger with its long-time ally, the Washington Regional Network for Livable Communities (WRN), in order to take advantage of the synergies and economies of scale. Created in 1991 by leaders on environmental, bicycle, pedestrian, transit, housing, and urban planning issues, WRN shared a similar mission, but focused specifically on equitable development, including affordable housing, transportation equity, and helping urban communities capture the benefits of smart growth.
Where We Work
The Coalition for Smarter Growth works in the greater Washington D.C. region.
Our first priority is implementation of smart growth in the District of Columbia, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland, and the City of Alexandria and Arlington and Fairfax counties in Virginia.
We will support partners in the outer jurisdictions, especially in Loudoun and Prince William counties in Virginia in order to fight the push for the Outer Beltway and related efforts to undermine the region’s trend toward smarter growth.
Finally, given the current challenge to transit and smart growth emanating from the State of Virginia, we will seek to challenge wasteful transportation spending priorities and defend and strengthen funding for transit and smart growth at the state level.