CNT delivers game-changing research, tools, and solutions to create sustainable + equitable communities.


Chasing after an adequate grocer: trains, cars, bikes, and my Black experience.

Having always lived in a Black community, I have always had to travel to the next-town-over to buy full groceries. There was one exception.  As a child, I often walked to an exceptional grocery store.  It was built on the site of an existing forest, anchored economic development, then suddenly closed after seven years. It remains vacant more than twenty years later.  I will also note that the grocery store provided video rentals.  The lower cost and one-stop-shopping forced... Continue reading »


Featured Publication

Increasing Funding and Financing Options for Sustainable Stormwater Management

by CNT
May 4, 2020

Our country’s water infrastructure needs investment. However, funding and financing sources are growing increasingly competitive and communities are finding it difficult to secure adequate resources to make needed investments in their systems. In this report, CNT identifies innovative funding and financing mechanisms to support communities working to upgrade their infrastructure. We look to the energy and transportation sectors for funding and financing applications, take a closer look at the ways our state revolving loan funds can be better utilized, and explore how public dollars can be invested on private property to achieve distributed impacts and benefits.

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The Slow Streets movement is picking up speed, but Chicago is getting left behind

Streetsblog Chicago | April 28, 2020

The open streets and Slow Streets movement to provide space for safe, socially-distanced sustainable walking and biking, along with general calls to make it safer and easier for people to get fresh air and exercise during the COVID-19 crisis, are catching on like wildfire across the country and around the globe. So much is happening that it’s hard to keep up with it all, so I’m going to throw a bunch of links at you that you can check out at your leisure.

But first, to get up to speed on what’s been going on in Chicago, including Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s closures of key bike commuting routes and parks, as well as the Active Transportation Alliance’s decision to essentially oppose open streets, read the new Chicago Reader article on the subject by Streetsblog’s Courtney Cobbs and myself. One of Active Trans’ chief stated reasons for not supporting open streets is “In conversations with community partners serving Latinx, Black, and Asian communities, nobody pointed to open streets as an immediate need.” The advocacy group declined to tell us which community partners they were talking about.

So we asked dozens of community organizations, aldermen, and transportation advocates in communities of color whether they thought piloting an Oakland-style Slow Streets program, banning through traffic on a network of side streets, could be beneficial in Chicago during the pandemic. We found that there’s quite a bit of support for the idea, including from heavy-hitters like Democratic Socialist alderman Carlos-Ramirez Rosa, and local planning and advocacy legend Jacky Grimshaw.

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