Strong Towns

The mission of Strong Towns is to support a model for growth that allows America's towns to become financially strong and self-sufficient.

The American approach to growth is causing economic stagnation and decline along with land use practices that force a dependency on public subsidies. The inefficiencies of the current approach have left American towns financially insolvent, unable to pay even the maintenance costs of their basic infrastructure. A new approach that accounts for the full cost of growth is needed to make our towns strong again.

The Strong Towns approach ultimately requires a reorientation of emphasis and a renewed understanding of what it takes to build a town or a neighborhood.

The current approach to growth emphasizes investments in new infrastructure to serve or induce new development. This approach uses public dollars inefficiently, destructively subsidizes one type of development over another and leaves massive maintenance liabilities to future generations. A Strong Town approach emphasizes obtaining a higher return on existing infrastructure investments. We can no longer simply disregard old investments in favor of new, but instead we need to focus on making better use of that which we are already committed to publicly maintain.

Dec 19
Best of Blog: Stroad Nation : This is my last post of 2014, and it's right that we should end with Ferguson, a story that I think defined this year as well as America at a very difficult time....
Strong Towns
Dec 18
Best of Blog: A Normal Life : Today's podcast and the post two weeks ago of the same name -- Just another pedestrian killed -- are part of a conversation that needs to happen in the United States....
Strong Towns
Dec 18
Podcast Show 199: Just another pedestrian killed : Chuck Marohn and Andrew Burleson sit down to discuss a tragedy in Springfield, Mass, where a mom and two girls were hit by a drunk driver on an urban stroad....
Strong Towns
Dec 17
Best of Andrew Price : My best-of-blog series every year has always been more properly called a best-of-Chuck's-blog series as it has only featured my work....
Strong Towns
Dec 17
Best of Blog: Staying Strong : The old courthouse terminating the view on 4th Street. Over the past two years I've been quietly offered a number of job opportunities....
Strong Towns
Dec 16
The Curbside Chat Grows Up : As the year winds down, I look back at what we did with the Curbside Chat and am really amazed....
Strong Towns
Dec 16
Best of Blog: Investing Cheap Money : I probably spent less time talking about the economy this year than in past years....
Strong Towns
Dec 15
Spritz : The German verb spritzen apparently means "to squirt" in English....
Strong Towns
Dec 15
Monday Member Blog Roll : Welcome to Monday!...
Strong Towns
Dec 15
Best of Blog: Follow the rules, bikers : In my hometown, we used chalk to temporarily narrow driving lanes. With a few hours, bikers -- and rare and endangered species in Brainerd -- showed up to use this space....
Strong Towns
Dec 12
Get your holiday treats and help Strong Towns : My holiday baking is just starting to ramp up. I have a series of "dips" (sugary things dipped in candy) that I do first, primarily because they freeze well....
Strong Towns
Dec 12
2014 Book List : Every year I'm asked to recommend my favorite books from the past year. I love to read and go through a crazy amount of literature in twelve months....
Strong Towns
Dec 12
Best of Blog: Dangerously Uninformed : Every society has it's dogmas, the conventional wisdom that, through the prism of history, seems backward at best, downright bizarre at worst....
Strong Towns
Dec 11
It's cookie time : Many of you, especially those of you that I'm connected with on Facebook, know that I enjoy baking, especially this time of year....
Strong Towns
Dec 11
Best of Blog: Texting in your Risk Gap : We've been having a very interesting conversation in the comment section of last week's post Just Another Pedestrian Killed....
Strong Towns
Dec 11
Podcast Show 198: Live from New York : Andrew Burleson and Jim Kumon join Chuck Marohn to look at where the Strong Towns movement is today and the shape it may take in the coming years. Strong Towns Podcast - Live from New York...
Strong Towns
Dec 10
#blackfridayparking follow up : Huge props to Mark Sowers who sent me his research and analysis of #blackfridayparking. He nailed it....
Strong Towns
Dec 10
Questions for Podcast #200 : Amazingly, the Strong Towns Podcast is fast approaching its 200th episode, a milestone worth stopping to acknowledge.We're asking you to help us with Show #200 by submitting your questions for Chuck t...
Strong Towns
Dec 10
Best of Blog: Living in Communion : I'm more than a little embarrassed at how many of our readers have started to add the label "Catholic" or "Christian" to my writing....
Strong Towns
Dec 9
Best of Blog: Some perspective on the gas tax : Anyone who has been here a while knows that I'm not a fan of organizations like the American Society of Civil Engineers or activist groups like Move MN, our version of a transportation coalition here...
Strong Towns
Dec 8
Best of Blog: Complex Cities : At the end of every year, we switch into December mode. That includes sharing our "best of" work from the current year....
Strong Towns
Dec 8
Monday Member Digest - Hardest time of year to be homeless : Well it’s my turn for the Monday Member Blog Roll, welcome! A few week’s back you may have noticed at gap in this series, when I dropped the ball....
Strong Towns
Dec 5
Friday News Digest - For Your Own Safety : This week's Friday News Digest is coming to you from Tulsa, OK, where the city's mayor has decided to unilaterally remove from plans a sidewalk along Riverside Drive leading to "A Gathering Place for...
Strong Towns
Dec 4
Show 197: Strength Test : Jim Kumon joins Chuck Marohn to discuss the Strong Towns Strength Test and how it can be applied to measure the strength and resiliency of a place. Strong Towns Podcast - Strength Test A Strong Town s...
Strong Towns
Dec 4
10 Steps to Fix a City : Chuck posted yesterday about the tragedy of pedestrians being killed by badly designed streets, and expressed passionately why the engineering community should be held accountable for these deaths....
Strong Towns
Dec 3
Andrew Price on speed : I can't watch this video of Andrew Price deliver Place versus non-Place at the National Gathering without getting a huge smile on my face....
Strong Towns
Dec 3
Just another pedestrian killed : Today Jim Kumon and I are in Springfield, Massachusetts, where last night we delivered our last Curbside Chat of 2014....
Strong Towns
Dec 2
Hans Noeldner : This week we are highlighting the intellectual contributions of some of our members....
Strong Towns
Dec 2
Strong Citizens Challenge: A Taste of Neighborliness : At Strong Towns, we talk a lot about infrastructure and economics – the bones of our cities. However, it is the people that populate our cities that comprise the heart....
Strong Towns
Dec 1
Jesse Bailey, A Zealous Nut : This week we are going to highlight some of our members and their great contributions to the Strong Towns dialog....
Strong Towns
Dec 1
Monday Member Blog Roll : Happy Monday-After-Thanksgiving, everyone!  We are officially in the time of year when everyone gets a little more rotund and (hopefully) a bit more cheerful.  This is the turkey-coma installment of t...
Strong Towns
Dec 1
Fine Grained : The problem with modern capitalism is that there are not enough capitalists. We need a system that encourages diverse ownership of capital if we want to build and support the middle-class....
Strong Towns
Nov 28
#blackfridayparking : #blackfridayparkingTake a Picture  |  Share it  |  Tell OthersSnap photos of the parking lots in your community on Black Friday....
Strong Towns
Nov 26
Slightly off topic reflections.... : People are asking me to write about Ferguson and give my reaction to what is going on there. I've been at a loss for words and instead found lines from the Prayer of St....
Strong Towns
Nov 26
Driverless into the Unknown : This week, I attended a conference about open data and open government. For those unfamiliar with the concepts, here's how well I listened....
Strong Towns
Nov 25
America's "Neglected" Infrastructure : Once again, the Infrastructure Cult's narrative was picked up and magnified by the old media....
Strong Towns
Nov 24
Transportation Webinar Tomorrow : Chuck explaining how hierarchical road networks manufacture congestion during Transportation in the Next American City in Austin, Texas. This coming Tuesday, November 25 is our next St...
Strong Towns
Nov 24
Monday Member Blog Roll : Welcome to Monday and the recap of the past week of member content....
Strong Towns
Nov 24
Black Friday Parking 2014 Event : Join us this Friday for #blackfridayparking, a nationwide event to draw attention to the ridiculousness of minimum parking requirements. Minimum parking requirements are often justifi...
Strong Towns