Month: November 2015

Summit for Smart Growth Next Friday…Register NOW for This Exciting Event


Before You Leave for the Holiday
Register NOW for Summit for Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities
Hear Inspiring, Nationally Known Keynote Speakers

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(Pictured above) Chuck Marohn of StrongTowns and Judy Wicks of Business Alliance for Local Living Economies and White Dog Cafe.


You’re coming to the 3rd Annual Summit for Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities on Dec. 4, at the Renaissance Hotel in Allentown, right?
If you’ve come in the past, then you know we assemble a diverse crowd of dyamic regional leaders. You’ve felt the energy in the room. You know that you’ll learn a LOT, come away inspired, informed and connected.
If you’ve never been before, it’s not too late to sign up. There are still some seats left and we warmly welcome you to join us. The event is scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and breakfast and lunch will be served.
The Summit has a reputation as being the place where real questions are asked and answered about real issues, such as:

  • how to grow a local economy while preserving quality of life,
  • how to connect regional transportation systems,
  • how to preserve farmland and regional identity most effectively, and
  • how to mitigate the negative impacts of gentrification on our urban neighborhoods so that “ALL boats” actually DO “rise with the tide.”
  • We’ve got an incredible day lined up with three good reasons for you to sign up TODAY, before you sit down for Thanksgiving turkey!

Reason #1: Inspiring, Nationally Recognized Speakers:
Hearing our breakfast speaker, Judy Wicks of the White Dog Cafe and the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies and our lunchtime speaker, Chuck Marohn of StrongTowns, are each alone worth the price of admission of $75. Both are inspiring, nationally recognized pioneers in their fields (local food entreprenership, local economies and smart transportation planning, respectively.) Come, sit back and expect to be inspired and impressed.

Reason #2: Dynamic, Informative and Thought-Provoking Panel Discussions:
As is our tradition at the Summit, we pull together dynamic thought-leaders from the Lehigh Valley and beyond and ask them difficult questions. This year, two panels will answer the following thought-provoking questions:
How can we preserve open space while supporting job creation and economic development?
How does a municipality strike a balance between paying its bills, preserving its individual appeal and supporting the local economy?
Given the increasing market demand for locally grown and organic food, how can the region better grow a vibrant local food economy?
How do we capitalize on our central location through an interconnected mass transit and rail system rather continuing to maily focus on widening our highways?

Our panelists include:
Panel #1 Regional Challenges of Land Use and Urban Revitalization (facilitated by former RenewLV board co-chair, Deana Zosky, Principal of FourScore LLC)

  • Dr. Percy Dougherty, PhD – Board of Commissioners, Lehigh County
  • Gary Smith, President & CEO of Chester County Economic Development Corporation
  • David Jaindl, Owner and President of Jaindl Farms
  • Dennis Benner, Developer on Bethlehem’s Southside and Attorney at Benner & Piperato
  • Rev. Gregory Edwards, PhD, CEO of Resurrected Life Community Development Corporation

Panel #2 Real Life Stories From the Farm, the Suburb and the Neighborhoods (facilitated by Holly Edinger, director of Government and Community Services, Sacred Heart Hospital. Edinger is the former director, ENVISION Study, LVEDC.)

  • Ron Beitler, Commissioner, Lower Macungie Township, “Why We Fight Sprawl”
  • Joe McHugh, Senior VP of Government Affairs, Amtrak, “Stories of How to Make Passenger Rail Happen”
  • Sal Panto, Mayor of Easton, PA, “Living Well Without the NIZ or CRIZ”
  • Forest Wessner, Jr., Farmer, Lehigh County, “Farmland Forever vs. the Lure of Development”
  • Andy Twiggar, Principal with Dunn Twiggar and developer of Allentown’s The Waterfront, “Considerations of Developing the Urban Core”
  • Pam Parker, “Old Skewl” shared use commercial kitchen business incubator, Vera Cruz, “Growing a Local Food Economy”

Reason #3: Afternoon “Table Talks” — Interactive Break-Out Sessions to Mobilize for Action

Following the speakers and the panels, you are invited to join us for “Table Talks,” interactive break-out sessions where we can network, share information and collaborate on various smart growth. This is where we move from ideas to actions. You will hear more about the topics early next week, but, in short, they range from Multi-Modal Transportation Planning through Complete Streets, Creating a Movement of Neighborhood Based Infill Developers and Passenger Rail.

Join our 2015 Sponsors!

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To sponsor this event, call us at 610-893-1060 or email us at
For more information about the 2015 Summit, our nationally recognized Keynote Speakers, dynamic line up of panelists or to register – click here. The deadline to have your logo included in all promotional materials is Monday, Nov. 30 by the end of the day.

Warm Regards,
Joyce Marin
Executive Director, RenewLV
P.S. Sign up for the 2015 Summit for Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities.

About RenewLV:
Renew Lehigh Valley is a non-profit organization committed to promoting smart growth and smart governance in order to revitalize our core communities, preserve open space, and establish an economically and environmentally sustainable foundation for our region’s future growth.

Sponsor Today

Contact Us!

Address: 1337 E 5th St, Bethlehem, PA 18015

Phone: (484) 893-1060

Send us a message on Facebook!

How can you support farmland preservation?

Like urban planning books? Join the Smart Growth Discussion Book Club

Do you have opinions about urbanism, smart growth and public policy that supports sustainability and equity? We gather regularly to discuss relevant community issues at the Coffee House Without Limits in Allentown! Come make friends, drink coffee and explore ideas that will improve our communities such as: zoning, gentrification, air quality and more.

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Make friends, discuss civic activism, new urbanism, smart growth, making a difference, and anything on your mind about your neighborhood or regional growth. Come make your voice heard!

If you are reading a really interesting book and want to propose it for future discussions please contact us: or call 484.893.1060.

The Coffee House Without Limits in Allentown!

Moving Ideas to Action

4th Annual Summit for Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities
"Our Towns, Our Farms, Our Future"

Our 4th Annual Summit for Smart Growth was a huge success! We focused on social entrepreneurship and how to make sustainability legal. Check out the coverage of our event by The Morning Call here

SoCap and Ben Price of CELDF.

Last year on December 9th, 2016, almost 200 community leaders and concerned citizens gathered at the Renaissance Hotel in Allentown for RenewLV's fourth annual Summit for Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities to discuss social entrepreneurship and how to make sustainability legal. We also held table discussions that covered topics such as strategies for land preservation, community revitalization and municipal cooperation.

At last year's Summit, we asked the questions:

•How do you balance what appears to be competing interests: Doing good and making money?

•How does overbearing local, state or federal laws prevent us from preserving quality of life and/or supporting smart growth?

•How do we achieve local self-determination without giving up some of the laudable goals of regulations intended to provide quality of life and prosperity for all?

A big thank-you to all of the Summit for Smart Growth sponsors who contributed to last year's discussion! You made this event possible!

Mountain View

Report Highlights Fiscal Benefits of Smart Growth Renew Lehigh Valley has often noted the benefits of smart growth development for municipalities, including cost savings. A new report by Smart Growth America details the benefits for municipalities realized through smart growth development. Read the full report here.

Watch the Envision Lehigh Valley Virtual Meeting

RenewLV and our partners at the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, the City of Allentown, the City of Bethlehem, and the City of Easton held a one-of-a-kind virtual public meeting for Envision Lehigh Valley. 100 participants logged in through a live video feed, Facebook, Twitter, and live chat. Missed the meeting? View the full recording on YouTube here