Sustainable Develoment – PlaniTulsa

Sustainable Development  - “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
Historical Development and Origins - The term “sustainable” must be defined, since on the surface it appears to be inherently positive. In reality, Sustainable Development has become a “buzz” term that refers to a political agenda, rather than an objectively sustainable form of development. Specifically, it refers to an initiative of the United Nations (U.N.) called the U.N. Sustainable Development Agenda 21, the most comprehensive statement of a political ideology.  
Known around the world simply as Agenda 21, this initiative is “a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally, and locally by organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, and Major Groups in every area in which humans impact the environment.” - Agenda 21 

In America, is it being progressively infused into every level of government by "Sustainable America" produced by President Clinton's Council on Sustainable Development authorized by Executive Order 12852. Named in 1996, then Tulsa Mayor Susan Savage contributed to "Sustainable America" policy as a Council Member.  

The following comparison clearly shows the goal of Smart Growth (Sustainable Development) is to severely

curtail automobile use and to reduce the foot print of Human habitation on the landscape. This type of planning is

characteristic of Socialist central planning ideology and should be rejected by people desiring Freedom and private enterprise.

New Urbanist's definition of SPRAWL is the way Tulsa is currently organized and administers new delevopments.

       Comparing Smart Growth and Sprawl (Ewing, 1996; Galster, et al, 2001)


Smart Growth



Compact development.

Lower-density, dispersed activities.

Growth pattern

Infill (brownfield) development.

Urban periphery (greenfield) development.

Land use mix

Mixed land use.

Homogeneous (single-use, segregated) land uses.


Human scale. Smaller buildings, blocks and roads. More detail, since people experience the landscape up close, as pedestrians.

Large scale. Larger buildings, blocks, wide roads. Less detail, since people experience the landscape at a distance, as motorists.

Public services (shops, schools, parks)

Local, distributed, smaller. Accommodates walking access.

Regional, consolidated, larger. Requires automobile access.


Multi-modal transportation and land use patterns that support walking, cycling and public transit.

Automobile-oriented transportation and land use patterns, poorly suited for walking, cycling and transit.


Highly connected roads, sidewalks and paths, allowing relatively direct travel by motorized and nonmotorized modes.

Hierarchical road network with numerous loops and dead-end streets, and unconnected sidewalks and paths, with many barriers to nonmotorized travel.

Street design

Streets designed to accommodate a variety of activities. Traffic calming.

Streets designed to maximize motor vehicle traffic volume and speed.

Planning process

Planned and coordinated between jurisdictions and stakeholders.

Unplanned, with little coordination between jurisdictions and stakeholders.

Public space

Emphasis on the public realm (streetscapes, pedestrian environment, public parks, public facilities).

Emphasis on the private realm (yards, shopping malls, gated communities, private clubs).

PLANITULSA Slide Show   

   U.N. Agenda 21

   March 9, 2013
In The News  
Agenda 21 is a 300-page 40-chapter ‘soft law’ policy document adopted by the delegates to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio De Janeiro in 1992. The document is not legally binding; it is a set of policy recommendations designed to reorganize global society around the principles of environmental protection, social equity, and what is called “sustainable” economic development. At the heart of the concept of sustainable development, is the assumption that government must manage society to ensure that human activity conforms to these principles. – Henry Lamb

   U.N. Agenda 21 & the          U.S. Congress

   January 20, 2012
In The News  
How many bills have been introduced in the U.S. Congress to promote United Nations' Agenda 21 objectives and turn them into policy? This 254-page pdf contains three months of research by independent researcher Debra K. Niwa.

   May 1, 2010
In The News  

ARTICLEPlaniTulsa Threatens American Freedoms - Tulsa Beacon April 29th 2010


Randal O’Toole, a scholar from the CATO Institute, said PlaniTulsa looks a lot like what Portland, Oregon did beginning 20 years ago when it embraced New Urbanism.

And that should worry people in Tulsa.

O’Toole spoke Saturday in Tulsa as part of a forum sponsored by OK-SAFE. A former professor at Yale University, O’Toole has written several books, including Gridlock: Why We’re Stuck in Traffic and What to Do About It.

“I want to talk about the American dream,” O’Toole said. “To own a home, start a business, to have mobility and own property. ‘Smart growth’ is a threat to the American Dream. That’s what PlaniTulsa is all about.”

   March 13, 2010
In The News  

After more than 15 years of trying to warn Americans about the dangers of Sustainable Development, finally, many in the freedom movement are beginning to understand that it is the root of most of the issues we are fighting today. But it is a vast, complicated issue that is difficult to comprehend – even for those of us who have been studying it for so long. It is critical that all freedom-loving Americans grasp the true destructive force of evil that is Sustainable Development.

To that end, I am herein reprinting an interview I gave recently to the Internet news site “The Post & Email.” I know I have been focusing a lot of my articles on this issue lately, but I think this interview is one of the most comprehensive explanations I have yet given. But it is also very simple to understand. Please make copies of this issue of the DeWeese Report and pass them on to all. ---TAD
         UC BERKELEY

   January 18, 2010
In The News  

ARTICLEVillage Vices: The Contradiction of New Urbanism and Sustainability - Ruth Durack - UC Berkeley, Places, College of Environmental Design


"I suspect, however, that the village and sustainability are inherently contradictory concepts. This suspicion is offered as a polemic, based on neither empirical data nor a comprehensive review of the literature. My purpose is to voice a renegade opinion on the merits of New Urbanism and its dubious claims to sustainability, and to draw attention to an altogether more sustainable alternative that has been explored in a number of recent projects. This alternative accepts a more open, indeterminate urbanism that recognizes discontinuities and inconsistencies as life-affirming opportunities for adaptation and change, offering choices for the future in accordance with the true definition of sustainability." - Ruth Durack 


   December 24, 2009
In The News  

In sustainable communities, people are engaged in building a community together. They are well–informed and actively involved in making community decisions. They make decisions for the long term that benefit future generations as well as themselves. They understand that successful long–term solutions require partnerships and a process that allows for representatives of a community's diverse sectors to be involved in discussions, planning, and decisions that respond directly to unique local needs.


Community policing is a philosophy that promotes organizational strategies, which support the systematic use of partnerships and problem–solving techniques, to proactively address the immediate conditions that give rise to public safety issues such as crime, social disorder, and fear of crime.


Community Partnerships

Collaborative partnerships between the law enforcement agency and the individuals and organizations they serve to develop solutions to problems and increase trust in police.

Community policing, recognizing that police rarely can solve public safety problems alone, encourages interactive partnerships with relevant stakeholders. The range of potential partners is large and these partnerships can be used to accomplish the two interrelated goals of developing solutions to problems through collaborative problem solving and improving public trust. The public should play a role in prioritizing public safety problems.

ARTICLETulsa Request for Action Ordinance

ARTICLEUSDOJ 072809 Letter To Chief Palmer COPS Hiring Grant

ARTICLEUSDOJ COPS Hiring App Approval Notification

ARTICLEUSDOJ COPS Hiring Grant Terms and Conditions

5. At the time of grant application, the grantee committed to retaining all CHRP officer positions awarded with state and/or local funds
for a minimum of 12 months at the conclusion of 36 months of federal funding for each position, over and above the number of locally–funded positions that would have existed in the absence of the grant. You cannot satisfy the retention requirement by using CHRP positions to fill vacancies from attrition.

   December 8, 2009
In The News  

The United States works domestically to implement the recommendations made at the Rio Conference.” – Source: U.S. Department of State , 95/06/09 Fact Sheet: Global Environmental Issues, Bureau of Public Affairs
         AGENDA 21  

   October 30, 2009
In The News  

“Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” – Source: The Brundtland Report, 1987
  • An oppressive, tyrannical political agenda, aimed at regulating and controlling all human activity
  • Operates contrary to the established principles of U.S. Sovereignty and the free enterprise system
  • Profoundly anti private property
  • Anti liberty & freedom
  • Un – Godly
Implemented by: (partial list)
  • Policy changes re: water, land, air quality
  • Comprehensive development plans
  • Land banking
  • Conservation easements
  • Tax credits
  • Neighborhood associations
  • Zoning code changes

   September 21, 2009
In The News  

There it is Tulsa; Sustainable Development/New Urbanism/Smart Growth/Government Planned and Directed Community Development in all its splendor.

   July 2, 2009
In The News  
ARTICLEA Message to PlaniTulsa: Do Not Change Too Much
The next step in the process of Tulsa’s transformation after the completion of the Comprehensive Plan will be to re–write our zoning codes.

While our present zoning code may have some flaws, by and large it has accomplished two of its most important goals – the first being that it has protected property rights by creating predictability in the use of land and second, being that it allowed for orderly growth.

Tulsa’s goal has always been to attract people from other cities and states to what we locals have always seen in Tulsa: a friendly, pro–family community with a low cost of living and a high quality of life.

As we write the new zoning code, we have a unique opportunity to set ourselves apart from other cities, and if we are going to set as a goal to grow as a city, we should adopt policies that gives people the desire to invest and live here.

We know that many people are leaving the West and East coasts to escape the high cost of living, unaffordable housing,  overbearing regulations, crime, high taxes, property rights violations and congestion, so doesn’t it make sense that if we want the growth, we should create a community that offers a sanctuary from these things?  So here are a few common sense suggestions for how we could accomplish that.


First, it should be made clear in policy and statute that Tulsa will not invoke eminent domain for any other reason than the founders created it for – roads, highways, or similar public works.  I would want to know that if I were to buy a property here that it would not be taken from me.

       TOM DEWEESE  
        BIG PICTURE  

   April 23, 2009
In The News  
"Ladies and gentlemen, I’ve come a long way to get here and I have such a short time to be with you. So, let’s just get everything out on the table right now, shall we?
I believe the American people, and their every action, are being ruled, regulated, restricted, licensed, registered, directed, checked, inspected, measured, numbered, counted, rated, stamped, censured, authorized, admonished, refused, prevented, drilled, indoctrinated, monopolized, extorted, robbed, hoaxed, fined, harassed, disarmed, dishonored, fleeced, exploited, assessed, and taxed to the point of suffocation and desperation.
America is drowning in a sea of rules and regulations, particularly under the guise of “saving the environment.”
We all know something is very wrong and we are trying to fix it.
Many in America attempt to fight against one issue or another as they try to understand what is happening to their country. But most fail to see the whole picture and are being crushed under a well organized “divide and conquer” tactic that keeps them reeling from crisis to crisis.
Tonight, I’m going to try to give you at least a peek at the all-encompassing, gut wrenching national transformation that we face -- and, hopefully, help to lift the veil of confusion. 
To put things in perspective, here are some questions every American should ask their elected officials – especially those supporting “climate change” legislation.
If it is proven that climate change is not man-made, but natural, will you be relieved and excited to know that man is off the hook?

We’ve been terrorized into accepting that human society was on the brink of extinction because of man-made global warming. We’ve been warned that, unless we take drastic action to reverse it – then islands will disappear, whole cities will be destroyed and polar bears will drown."


   September 8, 2008 - Updated May 14, 2009
In The News  
“Though many people consider Portland, Oregon, a model of 21st-century urban planning, the region’s integrated land-use and transportation plans have greatly reduced the area’s livability. To halt urban sprawl and reduce people’s dependence on the automobile, Portland’s plans use an urban-growth boundary to greatly increase the area’s population density, spend most of the region’s transportation funds on various rail transit projects, and promote construction of scores of high-density, mixed-use developments.”

“Portland-area residents have expressed their opposition to these plans by voting against light rail and density and voting for a property-rights measure that allows landowners to claim either compensation or waivers for land-use rules passed since they purchased their property. Opposition turned to anger when a 2004 scandal revealed that an insider network known as the “light-rail mafia” had manipulated the planning process to direct rail construction contracts and urban-renewal subsidies to themselves.”  


ARTICLERail Disasters 2005 - Randal O’Toole

This paper reviews ridership and other transit data published by the Federal Transit Administration from 1982
through 2003, plus 2004 ridership data published by the American Public Transportation Association, to determine the long-term effects of rail transit on transit ridership. The report also uses 1982–2003 data on miles of driving in each urban area published by the Federal Highway Administration to determine changes in transit’s share of regional travel.


The report shows that:

  • Over the past two decades, transit ridership has declined in thirteen of twenty-three U.S. regions that have rail transit;
  • In four regions that have built new rail lines since 1970, transit ridership is growing, but at slower rates than before rail construction began;
  • In three other regions, transit ridership is growing but not as fast as the growth in auto driving;
  • In one region, transit passenger miles are growing as fast as the growth in auto driving, while in two other regions either transit trips or transit passenger miles are growing faster than the growth in auto driving.
  • For comparison, the report identifies several regions with bus-only transit, including Austin, Charlotte, Las Vegas, Louisville, and Raleigh-Durham, in which transit is growing faster than auto driving.

Rail transit is promoted as a way to reduce congestion and air pollution. But it cannot do these things if rail construction causes or is accompanied by declines in overall transit ridership, or if it slows the growth in transit ridership to less than it was with a bus-only transit system.

ARTICLEGreat Rail Disasters - Randal O’Toole  

The stampede to plan and build rail transit lines in American cities has led and is leading
to a series of financial and mobility disasters. They are financial disasters because rail projects spend billions of taxpayers’ dollars and produce little in return. They are mobility disasters because rail transit almost always increases regional congestion and usually reduces transit’s share of commuting and general travel.
Out of the nation’s 50 largest urban areas, 23 had rail transit in 2000. This study reviews those 23 regions and finds:
  • Half of all rail regions lost transit commuters during the 1990s;
  • Taken together, rail regions lost 14,000 transit commuters in the 1990s;
  • Meanwhile, bus-only regions gained nearly 53,000 transit commuters in the 1990s;
  • Transit lost market share of commuters in two-thirds of all rail regions in the 1990s;
  • Per capita transit rides declined in half the rail regions;
  • Transit’s share of total travel declined in a majority of rail regions;
  • Sixteen of the 20 urban areas with the fastest growing congestion are rail regions – and one of the other four is building rail transit; and
  • By comparison, only three of the 20 urban areas with the slowest growing congestion are rail regions – and only because all three have nearly zero population growth. Based on these and other criteria, including cost effectiveness, safety, energy, and land use, this paper constructs a Rail Livability Index that assesses the effects of rail transit on urban areas. Every rail region earned a negative score, suggesting rail reduces urban livability.
        IN THE NEWS  

   August 30, 2008
In The News  
ARTICLE“Seek and Ye Shall Find” – "Less rhetoric, more action"; Stuart Jolly AFP

" "Seek and ye shall find" should be America's motto as Congress reconvenes next month. Consumers and business people recognize that while we have all been suffering with sky-high prices at the pump, our leaders in Washington have continued to debate increased drilling but haven't passed any legislation to increase supply and lower prices.

America needs less rhetoric and more action.

Surveys show that the vast majority of all Americans support increased development of resources in areas like the Outer Continental Shelf. We are tired of having Congress enforce high gas prices by restricting access to areas with known reserves.

By now most Americans recognize that we never will achieve complete energy independence. But we needn't rely
so heavily on unsteady regimes if we could tap into more of our own energy. We could then stop sending our investment capital overseas and put it to use here at home, where it belongs.

America is the only country that discourages development of its own domestic energy resources, artificially and unnecessarily inflating reliance on supplies from abroad. No other country does this because no other country could survive doing this, and we can't either.

Americans will continue to pay higher and higher energy costs until our citizens and
Congress understand that common sense and logic must prevail over die-hard environmentalists on this issue...." - Stuart Jolly AFP

“The Congressionally enforced oil shortage is in pursuit of Sustainable Development Policy and is intended to drive you out of your automobiles so we can give oil to our enemies in an effort to establish the socialists' "Utopia" ”. - OK-SAFE



   July 13, 2008
In The News  

Dear Tulsa City Councilors:

On behalf of concerned area citizens, I ask you to monitor closely the Visioning process used by Fregonese & Associates as they facilitate development of the PlaniTulsa Comprehensive Plan. The attachment contains an account of Mr. Fregonese’s past involvement in a couple of similar undertakings. - Ken Sellers

An excerpt:

“Contra Costa, CA - Fregonese Calthorpe & Associates (FCA), a land-use planning firm that works for many local governments, has threatened legal action against local residents who are upset with what FCA calls "conceptual illustrative plans" for their neighborhood. The company was hired by Contra Costa County (in the east San Francisco Bay area) to help write a land-use plan for the county.” - ARTICLEResidents alarmed at conceptual illustrative plans 


   June 28, 2008 - U.S. adopted Agenda 21 and set Central Planning of the American Evironment, Economy and
                                 Society into motion.
In The News  

ARTICLESustainable America - A New Consensus - President’s Council on Sustainable Development (PCSD) - EO12852 The Council adopted the Brundtland Commission's definition of sustainable development. The vision statement articulates the Council's broad concept of the benefits of sustainability for the nation. A New Consensus for the Prosperty, Opportunity and a Healthy Environment for the Future.

FOR NEARLY THREE years, we have jointly chaired a remarkable group of individuals - leaders from government, business, environmental, civil rights, labor, and Native American organizations - in an effort to overcome long years of conflict and agree on ways to achieve national environmental, economic, and social goals. President Clinton asked us to advise him on sustainable development, the idea that the quality of the country's future rests on integrating the economy, equity, and environment in national policy. This report is the expression of an agreement that has surprised us by its unanimity and its emphasis on values, consensus, and community. It is a beginning, the start of a national journey toward sustainability, but not a detailed roadmap.

ARTICLESustainable America - Definition and Vision Statement
Our vision is of a life-sustaining Earth. We are committed to the achievement of a dignified, peaceful, and equitable existence. A sustainable United States will have a growing economy that provides equitable opportunities for satisfying livelihoods and a safe, healthy, high quality of life for current and future generations. Our nation will protect its environment, its natural resource base, and the functions and viability of natural systems on which all life depends.
ARTICLESustainable America - We Believe Statement

10. Economic growth, environmental protection, and social equity are linked. We need to develop integrated policies to achieve these national goals.

11. The United States should have policies and programs that contribute to stabilizing global human population; this objective is critical if we hope to have the resources needed to ensure a high quality of life for future generations.


ARTICLESustainable America - Introduction 

President Clinton asked the Council to recommend a national action strategy for sustainable development at a time when Americans are confronted with new challenges that have global ramifications. The Council concluded that in order to meet the needs of the present while ensuring that future generations have the same opportunities, the United States must change by moving from conflict to collaboration and adopting stewardship and individual responsibility as tenets by which to live.

ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 1: National Goals Toward Sustainable Development
This common set of goals emerged from the Council's vision. These goals express in concrete terms the elements of sustainability. Alongside the goals are suggested indicators that can be used to help measure progress toward achieving them.
ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 2: Building A New Framework for A New Century
Future progress requires that the United States broaden its commitment to environmental protection to embrace the essential components of sustainable development: environmental health, economic prosperity, and social equity and well-being. This means reforming the current system of environmental management and building a new and efficient framework based on performance, flexibility linked to accountability, extended product responsibility, tax and subsidy reform, and market incentives.

ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 3: Information and Education 

Information and education, in both formal and nonformal spheres, have a tremendous potential for increasing citizen awareness and ability to engage in decisions affecting their lives. Key to this strategy is managing information better, expanding access to the decision process, measuring progress toward societal goals more comprehensively, and incorporating accounting measures that educate and enable decision makers and individuals to make decisions that are more economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable. Additionally, the country's formal education system must be reformed to better address sustainability, and nonformal education forums and mechanisms tapped to promote opportunities for learning about sustainability.


ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 4: Strengthening Communities 

Creating a better future depends, in part, on the knowledge and involvement of citizens and on a decision-making process that embraces and encourages differing perspectives of those affected by governmental policy. Steps toward a more sustainable future include developing community-driven strategic planning and collaborative regional planning; improving community and building design; decreasing sprawl; and creating strong, diversified local economies while increasing jobs and other economic opportunities.


ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 5: Natural Resources Stewardship 

Stewardship is an essential concept that helps to define appropriate human interaction with the natural world. An ethic of stewardship builds on collaborative approaches; ecosystem integrity; and incentives in such areas as agricultural resources management, sustainable forestry, fisheries, restoration, and biodiversity conservation.
ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 6: U.S. Population and Sustainability
Population growth, especially when coupled with current consumption patterns, affects sustainability. A sustainable United States is one where all Americans have access to family planning and reproductive health services, women enjoy increased opportunities for education and employment, and responsible immigration policies are fairly implemented and enforced.
ARTICLESustainable America - Chapter 7: International Leadership
The United States has both reason and responsibility to develop and carry out global policies that support sustainable development. Because of its history and power, the United States is inevitably a leader and needs to be an active participant in cooperative international efforts to encourage democracy, support scientific research, and enhance economic development that preserves the environment and protects human health.
     SMARTCODE 9.2  

   June 23, 2008
In The News  

1.3 intent

The intent and purpose of this Code is to enable, encourage and qualify the imple­mentation of the following policies:

1.3.1 The Region

a. That the region should retain its natural infrastructure and visual character derived from topography, woodlands, farmlands, riparian corridors and coastlines.
b. That growth strategies should encourage Infill and redevelopment in parity with New Communities.
c. That development contiguous to urban areas should be structured in the pattern of Infill TND or Infill RCD and be integrated with the existing urban pattern.
d. That development non-contiguous to urban areas should be organized in the pattern of CLD, TND, or RCD.
e. That Affordable Housing should be distributed throughout the region to match job opportunities and to avoid concentrations of poverty.
f. That transportation Corridors should be planned and reserved in coordination with land use.
g. That green corridors should be used to define and connect the urbanized ar­eas.
h. That the region should include a framework of transit, pedestrian, and bicycle systems that provide alternatives to the automobile.

1.3.2 The Community

a. That neighborhoods and Regional Centers should be compact, pedestrian-ori­ented and Mixed Use.
b. That neighborhoods and Regional Centers should be the preferred pattern of de­velopment and that Districts specializing in a single use should be the exception.
c. That ordinary activities of daily living should occur within walking distance of most dwellings, allowing independence to those who do not drive.
d. That interconnected networks of Thoroughfares should be designed to disperse traffic and reduce the length of automobile trips.
e. That within neighborhoods, a range of housing types and price levels should be provided to accommodate diverse ages and incomes.
f. That appropriate building Densities and land uses should be provided within walking distance of transit stops.
g. That Civic, institutional, and Commercial activity should be embedded in down­towns, not isolated in remote single-use complexes.
h. That schools should be sized and located to enable children to walk or bicycle to them.

i. That a range of Open Space including Parks, Squares, and playgrounds should be distributed within neighborhoods and downtowns. 


   June 22, 2008
In The News  

ARTICLEThe End of Affordability Part 1 - Video

ARTICLEThe End of Affordability Part 2 - Video

ARTICLEThe End of Affordability Part 3 - Video

ARTICLEThe End of Affordability Part 4 - Video

The End of Affordability is a grassroots documentary, and has been divided into 5 parts for viewing on YouTube, each part approximately 5 minutes in duration.


The aim of the film, produced in late 2006, is to provide an overview of the problems associated with what is commonly known as "urban consolidation", with particular reference to the reduction in housing affordability resulting from this disastrous planning policy.


Many governments (including the NSW State Government), environmentalists, planners and business interest have advocated this approach for more than a decade. However, not a single successful example of urban consolidation exists in the world, and there are now a growing number of people and organisations coming out against what is a fundamentally flawed and socially destructive planning ideology.


Ted Webber, a member of the Putney and District Progress Association and its sub-committee, the Coalition Against Private Overdevelopment  (CAPO) interviews Dr Tony Recsei, President of Save our Suburbs (SOS) about the problems of urban consolidation. Five major issues or "fallacies" are discussed, with the reduction in housing affordability being the biggest problem now facing the first home buyer.


In addition, the fight by CAPO and its thousands of supporters against a major apartment development in the Sydney suburb of Putney is highlighted as a typical example of what is happening in many suburbs and towns around Australia. The democratic rights of citizens and their local councils are being overruled by centralised State Government planning policies. The end result is that the ability of the average individual or family to own and live in their own home is under more threat than at any time in the last 60 years.


The critical problem of housing affordability is confirmed by The National Affordable Housing Forum held at Old Parliament House Canberra on 23-24 July 2006, where it concluded that:


"During the last decade or so,

  • average house prices relative to income have almost doubled
  • the proportion of first homebuyers has fallen by about 20%
  • average monthly payments on new loans have risen by 50%
  • the proportion of low-rent homes has fallen by at least 15%
  • opportunities to rent public housing have fallen by at least 30%" - Author: Wildhiland
For more information about this documentary please contact: Dr Tony Recsei, President of Save our Suburbs on:   • Phone: (02) 9487 2061 • Email:  

   June 20, 2008
In The News  

ARTICLEU.S. Government's Sustainable Development Partnerships Web Site

This site provides information on U.S. efforts to work with other governments, the private sector, civil society and other organizations to plan and implement voluntary partnerships that promote economic growth, social development and environmental stewardship.

ARTICLEGlobal Development Alliance

We agree on the need for partnerships across borders and among both the public and private sectors. We must call upon the compassion, energy, and generosity of people everywhere. This means that not only governments can help, but also private corporations, foundations, faith-based groups, and nongovernmental organizations as well. —President George W. Bush
ARTICLEU.S. Department of State - Sustainable Development
"We believe sustainable development begins at home and is supported by effective domestic policies, and international partnerships. Self-governing people prepared to participate in an open world marketplace are the very foundation of sustainable development. President Bush has emphasized that the hopes of all people, no matter where they live, lie in greater political and economic freedom, the rule of law, and good governance." 

   June 9, 2008
In The News  
ARTICLERoadmap to Gridlock: The Failure of Long-Range Metropolitan Transportation Planning
Sacramento, California’s, 2006 Metropolitan Transportation Plan admitted that transportation plans written for the region “during the past 25 years have not worked out.”
  • Despite building light rail and making other efforts aimed at “luring drivers out of their autos,” the share of transit riders who “have access to an automobile [and] can otherwise choose to drive” was decreasing.
  • Despite efforts to promote alternatives to driving by discouraging sprawl and promoting high-density infill, sprawl “ continues to out-pace infill . . . and businesses increasingly prefer suburban locations.”
  • “Even though gasoline prices are at an all-time high, the total amount of driving has more than doubled since 1980.”
  • Revealingly, the report added, “lack of road building and the resulting congestion have not encouraged many people to take transit instead of driving.”

Randal O’Toole is a senior fellow with the Cato Institute and author of The Best-Laid Plans: How Government Planning Harms Your Quality of Life, Your Pocketbook, and Your Future


   June 9, 2008
In The News  
ARTICLEThe Planning Penalty: How Smart Growth Makes Housing Unaffordable

Smart growth and other forms of growth-management planning create artificial housing shortages that impose significant burdens on low-income families and first time homebuyers. This paper examines several sources of housing data to determine the specific effects of growth management planning on housing prices. - Randal O’Toole 


   June 9, 2008
In The News  

Sovereignty International, Inc.


Sustainable Development

Connecting the Dots...

This new DVD is divided into three 20-minute presentations designed for use at discussion groups, local meetings, or home study.  It was prepared by Henry Lamb, from nearly 20 years of research, observation, and actual experience at U.N. meetings and meetings of the President's Council on Sustainable Development.

Part 1 begins with Rep. Joe Neal describing how the "Vision 2020" plan in Sumpter County, South Carolina has robbed certain residents of their property rights, while rewarding others.  The origin of the land use control policy is identified, documented and traced through the President's Council on Sustainable Development, and into public policy.   The new "Collaborative Decision Process" is defined and demonstrated.

Part 2 describes how the "visioning process" is translated into "Action Plans" and explains how the consensus proccess relies on "negative response" questions to eliminate opposition. The impact of sustainable development in local communities is discussed by local people whose towns are being transformed into sustainable communities.

Part 3 connects the dots between sustainable communities and the Wildlands Project, documenting how sustainable development is affecting all of America.  The people and organizations that are driving the process are identified, and the process is demonstrated to show how policy moves from individuals and NGOs through the IUCN, to the U.N. to national governments, and to state and local governments, and into every community.

There is nothing like this presentation available anywhere.  It is the most comprehensive description of sustainable development, and its impact, that has yet been produced. 

It is available now by clicking here.

Sustainable Development: Connecting the Dots... is the theme of this year's Freedom21 Conference in Dallas, Texas, July 24 -26.  Check out the program and be sure to register today.



Sovereignty International, Inc.


   June 9, 2008
In The News  

ARTICLEIs Urban Planning “Creeping Socialism”? - Randal O’Toole


"Socialism is commonly defined as government ownership of the means of production. With the exception of a number of services that are viewed as natural monopolies, such as sewer and water supplies, socialism in the form of government ownership has never achieved prominence in the United States. Instead, governments here have relied on regulation as a way of obtaining the same goals that socialists claim to seek: efficiency, equality, and control of externalities. If this approach is socialism, then urban planning has represented creeping socialism since around 1920. But it has recently accelerated and is now running rather than creeping. Moreover, it has such a head start that lovers of freedom may not be able to halt it, much less turn it around."

"Urban planning rests on the ideas that urban residents impose numerous externalities on one another and that planning and regulation can minimize such externalities. Despite their claim of scientific expertise, planners often have little idea what they are doing: cities are simply too complex to understand or control. As a result, the history of urban planning is the story of a series of fads, most of which have turned into disasters. Urban renewal and public housing are two obvious examples." - Randle O’Toole

Smart-Growth Prescriptions

Smart-growth prescriptions include variations on the following themes:
  • Metropolitan areas should be denser than they are today. In growing regions this objective is achieved by limiting or forbidding new construction on land outside the urban fringe and instead increasing the density of existing developed areas.
  • Transportation should emphasize mass transit, walking, and bicycling instead of automobiles. This strategy means few or no new investments in road capacity, combined with considerable investments in transit, preferably rail transit. Investments in roads are often aimed at reducing their capacity, a concept known as traffic calming.
  • Land-use planning should focus on making areas more suitable for transit, walking, developments, meaning high-density, mixed-use developments located near rail and bicycling. A major way of achieving this goal is through transit-oriented stations or along transit corridors.
  • Developments also should be pedestrian friendly, meaning (among other things) narrow streets, wide sidewalks, and stores fronting on the sidewalk rather than set back behind a parking lot.


   June 9, 2008
In The News  
ARTICLEThe Mythical World of Transit-Oriented Development by John A. Charles, MPA, and Michael Barton, Ph.D.
"Of all the public policies that have affected development in the Orenco neighborhood since 1980, the construction of light rail has been one of the least important. Other decisions were much more instrumental in jumpstarting development, including: the decision by Hillsboro to create an urban renewal district to consolidate land ownership; the decision by Intel to locate a facility within the district, thereby creating a critical mass of highly paid workers that could support upscale residential development nearby; and the upgrades to the local road system, including Cornell Road, Evergreen Parkway and Butler Road, which took previously land-locked parcels and allowed them to be available for commercial development.


Most of the development projects near the Orenco/231st station have been publicly subsidized. The rail extension itself cost taxpayers more than $190 million; a $500,000 Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) grant from the federal government paid for part of the TriMet Park-n-Ride; Hillsboro provided over $1,000,000 from its Traffic Impact Fund to compensate for infrastructure investments; and Metro spent $230,000 to pay TOD consultant Peter Calthorpe to do various design sketches for Westside light rail stations, including Orenco."....


"Understanding the relationship between light rail and development is important because TOD has become the primary justification for continued rail expansion in Portland. In 1995 Metro’s John Fregonese stated, “Light rail is not worth the cost if you’re just looking at transit. It’s a way to increase the density of the community.”" - by John A. Charles, MPA, and Michael Barton, Ph.D.


        IN THE NEWS

   June  8, 2008 - Michael Bates argues Sustainable Development Concepts

ARTICLEArt of the Possible – Progress and the city's common good must be at the heart of successful streets vote.- UTW; Michael Bates


“But taking care of what we have is a more pressing need than building more to take care of. Street widening ought to be considered in connection with matters of urban design and public transit which could reduce the need for wider streets.South Tulsa traffic isn't snarled just because the roads are narrow. Zoning segregates retail from residential, so that every shopping trip requires several miles of driving.


The development patterns so beloved of suburbanites -- cul-de-sacs, residential collector streets, gated communities -- funnels traffic into bottlenecks. The lack of through-residential streets forces local traffic onto arterials. Midtown's grid disperses traffic efficiently across multiple paths.


In Midtown, you can use neighborhood streets to avoid making a left-hand turn onto or off of an arterial. That's not possible in most of south Tulsa, and nasty old left-turners are a prime cause of traffic delays down south. Homeowners in south Tulsa have chosen the area's amenities over convenience and ease of travel. Before all of us spend hundreds of millions on street widening in their part of town, south Tulsans should be willing to accept some adjustments to their lifestyle, which may include putting public streets through their gated communities, building mid mile minor arterials (think 15th or Utica in midtown), and allowing neighborhood-scale retail development to connect directly to residential areas.

Fixing what's wrong with south Tulsa is a complex issue, and what to fund ought to be addressed as part of the new Comprehensive Plan.” – Michael Bates; UTW June 4, 2008



   July 27, 2008 - UPDATED June 11, 2009
In The News  
Besides Dallas, there are 12 suburban cities that are members, all of which have been members since 1983. 
No other cities have joined since then, even though there are 26 others that are eligible to join.  Those have declined for several reasons; some have rejected membership by the voters, some are unable to join because an additional sales tax would cause them to exceed the maximum allowed by state law, and others have joined other transit systems.
Assuming my friend’s estimate of 80,000 riders per day is correct, and assuming that the total is a conservative 2 million, where does that place the percentage of the population that uses light rail? Around 4 percent.

Since it looks like the new Tulsa Comprehensive Plan will include light rail mass transit, I thought it would be interesting to present the highlights of a report by author Randal O’Toole entitled, “Rail Disasters 2005,” to describe the outcome that we can expect.  This is especially important in view of the budget cuts that Mayor Taylor recently submitted to the City Council. If Tulsa is having trouble keeping the lights on, so to speak, why would we consider an expensive system like light rail.

ARTICLELight Rail Transportation Has Failed to Meet Expectations - May 7, 2009

“You are going to be hearing and seeing more in the coming months and years about light rail in Tulsa, since there are those who see it as a necessary component of the new comprehensive plan that will follow a New Urbanism model.  John Fregonese, our planning consultant is an advocate of light rail, and he will undoubtedly vision it in Tulsa’s future….Light rail is extremely expensive to build. It costs about the same to build one mile of light rail as it does to build one mile of a four lane highway, and according to Randal O’Toole’s “Great Rail Disasters” report, “highways produce nearly 100 times as much passenger transport plus far more freight transport than transit”.”

ARTICLENew Urbanism and Churches - April 23, 2009
It’s been a couple of years now since I began writing articles in response to the City of Tulsa’s effort to revise its Comprehensive Plan, beginning with the seminar that the city presented where words like “sustainability” and “mixed use development” were gently introduced to a crowd of architects, engineers and realtors.
I was already very aware of and self-educated on New Urbanism at the time, and when I asked one of the city staff people if that is where the city was headed, I was told, “maybe we are, maybe we aren’t”.
After watching PlaniTulsa, I don’t think that there is any doubt that that is exactly where this city is headed.  In my opinion, the decision to lead Tulsa in that direction had already been made far in advance of that seminar or the hiring of the comprehensive planning consultant.
Americans in recent generations have not been taught the principles that our Constitution embodies; many or perhaps most young people have been given (maybe) a cursory version of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, neglecting to instill the values that the Founders knew were necessary for this republic to survive.
At the core of these documents is the central theme of inalienable rights, or natural rights, that come only from God. These are rights that can’t be taken from us unless we chose to forfeit them. Others may deprive us of these rights, or prevent us from exercising these rights, but no government or sovereign power can ever actually take them away from us. - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLEProtecting the Constitution - February 5th, 2009  
Jefferson thought it immoral to pass on debts from one generation to the next, writing, “we shall all consider ourselves unauthorized to saddle posterity with our debts, and morally bound to pay them ourselves; and consequently within what may be deemed the period of a generation, or the life (expectancy) of the majority.”

Samuel Adams believed the same, saying, “The Utopian schemes of leveling (redistribution of the wealth) and a community of goods (central ownership of the means of production and distribution), are as visionary and impractical as those which vest all property in the Crown. (These ideas) are arbitrary, despotic, and in our government, unconstitutional.” - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLEPreserving Our Constitutional Freedom - January 22nd, 2009  
"The American Constitution was, as the book says on its cover, “A Miracle That Changed the World,” and it has helped me realize just how important it is to go back to the Constitution in the decision-making process we go through in something as basic as city planning."
"The Constitution made possible the 5000-year leap because it unleashed the creativity in the citizens of this country that brought us, within 200 years, from essentially the same lifestyle that people lived 5000 years before, to the modern lifestyle that we now enjoy."

"When the Constitution was written, it gave Americans a freedom that had never existed in history.  Never before could individuals enjoy the kinds of freedoms that the Constitution guaranteed, and this was at a time when “enlightened” Europeans were embracing socialism, in particular in France, where the bloody and failed French Revolution was taking place." - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLEUnited Nations Plan in Tulsa - January 15th, 2009  

"About a year ago I attended a conference held by the City of Tulsa, and it was there that I first heard some of the code words that are normally associated with New Urbanism spoken locally.  After the meeting I spoke to State Rep. Lucky Lammons and I gave him an explanation of what New Urbanism was.  Standing in our circle was one of the speakers of the conference.  When I told Lucky that all of this came from the U.N.’s Agenda 21, she immediately replied, “that’s right.” " - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLENew Urbanism and Sprawl - July 18, 2008 
"It would be difficult to understand the New Urbanism movement without understanding their concept of what “sprawl” means. To say that sprawl is viewed negatively by New Urbanists would be a gross understatement, for it is the antithesis of what their ideal of the right type of planning and living is."

"In New Urbanism, sprawl is exemplified primarily by the construction of housing subdivisions which are “unwalkable”, that is, it is necessary to drive a car to buy even the most basic of goods and services." - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLEChurches Get Very Little Mention in PlaniTulsa Research – June 4, 2008  
"Fortunately, there was not one negative comment made about churches. Unfortunately, there were very few comments made about churches at all, especially in comparison to many of the topics that seemed to get the most attention. In fact, it wasn’t until I read the sixteenth report that I found the word church, and that was in reference to church architecture being an asset to Tulsa."....

"We have more churches per capita in Tulsa county than any county in the country, and this is how much attention is being paid to churches in our planning process, at least by the people who were interviewed, and this is assuming that all of their comments were reported. So the question is, “why not?”. If churches are so important to the community, why isn’t there more attention being paid to them? I can assure you, there is a lot of attention being paid to churches, and there is going to be a lot more. And the reason why is money. Churches take valuable property out of the city’s tax base, and I have been told by someone who should know that there have been discussions and concern expressed at the city government level about how much property megachurches are taking."....

"On the other side, there were numerous references to all things green in almost all of the interviews. Subjects that included walkable communities, light rail, sustainability, mass transit, bicycles, urban sprawl, and infill development were mentioned many times, and affordable housing, gentrification, and form based codes were moderately mentioned."....
"Please contact me if you would be willing to serve. Tulsa’s church community needs to make its presence known in the development of the new Comprehensive Plan, but you can bet that it will not get the consideration it deserves without some prodding." - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957
ARTICLECall for Participation – May 22, 2008
"When I learned that Fregonese had been hired as the planning consultant, my first concern was that forcing Tulsa into a New Urbanist model would be the goal, especially since Fregonese has worked with Andres Duany, the New Urbanist guru. Duany wrote the “Smartcode”, a new zoning code that plans the reduction or elimination of the use of the car and the extreme densification of urban areas to the preclusion of people from rural areas."....

"When asked about his involvement with New Urbanism and Smart Growth movements, he was quoted on the Michigan Land Use Institute website as saying, “I’m not a member of that church, but a lot of my friends go there, and I sometimes enjoy their services. I’m not as dogmatic; I feel a need to adapt solutions to local values and cultures. New Urbanism in some cases tries to impose culture."....

"On the same website, John Norquist, President and CEO of Congress for the New Urbanism, said, “I think it’s his ability to organize public opinion that sets him apart…He gets people to think that density is not bad, which is a remarkable accomplishment.”

So the question is, does Fregonese have an agenda, or is he really willing to listen to Tulsa? As one person put it to me, and I am paraphrasing, is Tulsa going to go through this elaborate process, one that will not be completed until the end of 2009, only to find that the plans had already been made at the start?"....
"It is critical that churches receive fair consideration and inclusion in the new Comprehensive Plan. If you are willing to be part of a group that will do so, please send me an email with your name, phone number, and a brief description of your concerns and abilities so that we can put together an influential group of people who can protect the interests of our city’s churches." - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957

ARTICLETulsa to Update Comprehensive Plan – May 17, 2007  
"One of the speakers at the seminar who presented the city’s approach to the new Comprehensive Plan mentioned that they would be looking at planning for more “high density” and “mixed use” development. After the seminar I asked one of the speakers if that meant that the city was considering the New Urbanism model. He said that was possible, but that is why they were asking for citizen input."....
"In the New Urbanism model, the inner circle represents its city limits and its fenceline, just like the zoning code example. However, the land between the city limits and the fence line is called a “growth management area”. No construction is allowed in this area unless it is a part of a planned subdivision that has been designed according to strict guidelines including “mixed use” and “high density” requirements. These developments will only be allowed when there is nowhere else to go within the city limits, after the city itself has been developed to a greater density."....
"I sincerely hope that the City of Tulsa is not considering this model as a basis for its new Comprehensive Plan. And while I want to give them the benefit of the doubt, I am concerned that it may very well happen. Given that most of the land in the city limits of Tulsa is already developed, Tulsa is a prime candidate for the New Urbanism model. This would not be good for Tulsa’s growth, and we need to be vigilant to prevent it from happening." - Randy Bright; Tulsa Beacon - 918-664-7957


   June 4, 2008
In The News  
"Contra Costa, CA - Fregonese Calthorpe & Associates (FCA), a land-use planning firm that works for many local governments, has threatened legal action against local residents who are upset with FCA calls "conceptual illustrative plans" for their neighborhood. The company was hired by Contra Costa County (in the east San Francisco Bay area) to help write a land-use plan for the county.

In December 2002, FCA held a "consensus-building" public workshop in the city of Martinez. Participants were led to believe that their comments would help determine the shape of the plan. So when the proposed "conceptual" plan was published in a local newspaper, residents of several neighborhoods were shocked to find that it called for redeveloping their neighborhoods to much higher densities."

"As outlined in a memo from John Fregonese to a Contra Costa County policy committee, the goal of the process is to get all nineteen cities to agree to a "compact" that will require them all to follow the "vision" being developed by FCA. Part of this compact includes a series of "principles," including "the principle of speaking with a collective voice." Just what is a "collective voice"? Apparently, it consists of FCA holding public meetings and then reporting that people at the meetings share the "vision" of increased densities and "infill" -- regardless of what the people at those meetings actually said."- Randal O'Toole The Thoreau Institute


   June 4, 2008
In The News  
Conventional Zoning vs. the SmartCode
These images show typical differences in the form of development between conventional zoning (top image in each pair) and the SmartCode (bottom).

"Conventional zoning separates uses, forcing everyone to drive to work and shopping and creating traffic congestion, while only minimally regulating form. Parking lots and curb cuts are allowed to dominate the frontages, creating a hostile environment for pedestrians and cyclists.
The SmartCode regulates form more strongly to enhance pedestrian safety and enjoyment, and to structure networks of streets that relieve traffic congestion. The SmartCode does address use, but the Transect zones signify different intensities of mixed use. Notice that in the Retail illustration, which shows a typical T-5 zone, the SmartCode allows Residential along with the Retail, in the form of apartments over shops. This helps keep housing affordable and enables "eyes on the street," walkability, and vibrant downtowns.

Another difference is the diversity of housing types allowed under the SmartCode in the higher Transect zones. The Conventional Suburban Development (CSD) illustration shows all one house type and lot size in the subdivision, while the Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND) pattern provided by the SmartCode includes a choice of housing types and lot sizes, and therefore prices, within one neighborhood." - Andres Duany 



   April 9, 2008
In The News  
At times, the political agenda embodied in Sustainable Development is implemented under other names for purposes of political expediency. J. Gary Lawrence, a planner for the city of Seattle, and advisor to the President’s Council on Sustainable Development, said in 1998, that, “Participating in a UN advocated planning process would very likely bring out many ... who would actively work to defeat any elected official ... undertaking Local Agenda 21. So we will call our process something else, such as “comprehensive planning,” “growth management,” or “smart growth.”  - Lawrence, J. Gary, The Future of Local Agenda 21 in the New Millennium, The Millennium Papers, UNED-UK, Issue 2, (1998), 3.

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