Fostering Regional Equity: HUD Announces Sustainable Communities Planning Grants

Today the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced the historic HUD-DOT-EPA interagency partnership grants. These grants will invest nearly $100 million 45 regions to allow public agencies and communities to plan for the integration of housing, transportation, infrastructure and environmental improvements.

PolicyLink applauds the leadership of these agencies for creating the framework and resources to address the great challenges facing our communities by planning for future communities of opportunity. Hundreds of PolicyLink equity-advocate partners weighed in with HUD on the guidance of this program. Their best practice expertise informed and helped establish strong equity-focused criteria for the program.

A broad range of proposals – from rural to urban-metro areas – got funded. Two examples include:

  • The Mid-America Regional Council serving metropolitan Kansas City, MO, put together a plan which includes strategies that address the fundamental elements of livability within the region, including: transportation choices, environmental health, social equity, housing affordability, neighborhood preservation, community health, and workforce development.
  • A rural award to the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, which works to empower youth and families through a focus on health, culture, and the environment. Their plan builds on current efforts to work with communities on the Pine Ridge Lakota Sioux reservation to integrate housing, improve transportation, and increase workforce opportunities for tribal members.

PolicyLink congratulates the awardees for their efforts to plan for more equitable development. We will build on our Sustainable Communities Equity Guide to provide technical assistance to regions that will work to deliver communities of opportunity through equity-focused planning.

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