Smart Growth Self-Assessment for Rural Communities: Madison County, New York

In 2012, Madison County, New York asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Sustainable Communities (OSC) for help developing a smart growth self-assessment tool for rural communities that helps local governments evaluate how well their policies and regulations support the type of development they want and identify strategies for improvement. EPA tested the tool in three rural communities in Madison County— the small city of Oneida, the town of Brookfield and the village of Chittenango. Although EPA designed the tool in collaboration with Madison County, any rural community can use the self-assessment. It focuses on issues that are unique to rural areas while acknowledging that rural communities are diverse. The smart growth self-assessment tool for rural communities is divided into sections based on topics, or “goal areas,” including: revitalize village and town centers, strengthen the local economy, engage and connect community members, improve health and promote active living, protect natural habitats and ecosystems, support productive agriculture for a variety of markets, meet housing needs for different ages and incomes, preserve historic and cultural resources, provide transportation choices, invest in efficient public infrastructure systems and operations, and use energy efficiently and provide renewable energy. Each section includes a series of questions about the community’s policies, codes, and strategies that might help the community achieve its long-term objectives. Following the questions are strategies, grouped according to whether they apply to larger towns or more rural areas, which support the overall goal. The tool also helps users prioritize strategies to pursue. It includes links to case studies, sample code language, and other resources. In addition to the self-assessment tool, the document includes a case study of smart growth planning in Dryden, New York.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Maps; Photos; References;
  • Pagination: 103p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01577105
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 22 2015 10:16AM