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|Additional Action Step
Serve on your local planning commission
You may want to serve on the local land use board to insure ordinances include provisions for conservation subdivision design. There are plenty of resources available on this website. To learn more, you may wish to purchase the book, "Conservation Design for Subdivisions", available at our local bookstore or on Randall Arendt's website at www.greenerprospects.com.
Look at your town's land use regulations. As a resident or business owner, you can ask whether you town has an updated plan that allows (voluntary and incentive based regulations for conservation subdivisions rarely work and incentives are not necessary), or better yet, mandates conservation subdivision design (NOT clustering).
You may want to review your town's land use regulations to see if they encourage conservation, or as is more often the case, encourage the conversion of eventually all the buildable land into house lots and streets.
Ask if the conservation subdivision ordinance requires the officials, developer and adjoining neighbors to conduct a site visit where participants walk the property while at the concept stage, before any engineering is done, to identify important conservation areas.
Suggestions from the University of Connecticut
"Whether you're a local land use official, resident or business owner, you can ask whether your town has an updated plan of conservation and development. You can discuss with your neighbors the role conservation subdivision design might play in meeting neighborhood and community goals.
You might review your local land use regulations to see if they encourage development protective of your town's character and valuable natural resources or whether your town has programmed itself for more sprawl, in which all lands are eventually converted to house lots and streets.
You might consider serving on a local land use board to insure local plans and regulations include provisions for conservation subdivision design. In any case, do not rely on someone else to take the initiative. You can help place your town in the driver's seat regarding its future, or you can leave it to someone else with interests quite different from yours."
Taken from the University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension NEMO Project and The Natural Lands Trust: "All about conservation design subdivisions"
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