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100 Lafayette St
Baton Rouge, LA, 70801
United States


The Louisiana Smart Growth Summit is the premier interdisciplinary forum promoting dialogue focusing on resilience, livability, planning, design  infrastructure, development, placemaking, public transit, transportation, connectivity, policymaking and economic development.

2018 Media Archive

Watch some of the exciting sessions from the 2018 Louisiana Smart Growth Summit.



Building a safe, walkable longfellow park

Through a 2018 Community Challenge Grant, CPEX and AARP worked together to improve neighborhood access to Longfellow Park in Baton Rouge, LA.


Opening poem: watery hopes and dirty plans

In 2017, CPEX hosted the Rising Above Symposium to engage leaders from three coastal Louisiana communities—Buras, Chauvin, and Thibodaux- in visioning a resilient future and developing the strategies needed to realize that vision. Chancelier Xero Skidmore composed “Watery Hopes and Dirty Plans” using transcripts from interviews with residents of those communities expressing their fears, hopes, and memories of coastal life.

Chancelier Xero Skidmore
Executive Director, Forward Arts


Smart towns, big character

Small towns play a big role in rural states like Louisiana, and some of the most interesting and innovative place-making work in the country is happening in these communities. Learn more about how small towns are taking the lead, capitalizing on their unique character and culture.

Mayor Greg Lemons
Town of Abita Springs

Kate Durio
CREATE Initiative/ Assistant to the Mayor-President, Lafayette Consolidated Government

George Marks
President/ Director, NUNU Arts and Culture Collective

Phanat Xanamane
Co-founder and Creative Director, Envision da Berry

Moderator: Ryan Benton
Project Manager, Center for Planning Excellence


lunch plenary: rock star planning in philly

Planning doesn't always get the credit it deserves for helping to make great cities. Superstar city planner Anne Fadullon will put planning on center stage, sharing her own experiences that demonstrate how great planning leads to funding, infrastructure and progress.

Anne Fadullon
Director of Planning & Development, City of Philadelphia

Interviewed by: Stephanie Riegel
Editor, Greater Baton Rouge Business Report


let’s do development differently: community-driven redevelopment case studies

How can we encourage development that is better aligned with our goals for equity, diversity, cultural character, economic stability, and environmental sustainability? Hear from those who have tackled these challenges and lived to tell us what they learned.

Quint Studer
Founder, Studer Community Institute/Vibrant Community Partners

Tommy Pacello
President, Memphis Medical District Collaborative

Scott Ritter
Co-Founder & Managing Partner, Ritter Maher Architects

Moderator: Davis Rhorer
Executive Director, Downtown Development District


creating the best blight-fight toolbox

Want to learn about techniques and tools available to clean up blighted properties? Come hear about national and local examples illustrating equitable and sustainable community revitalization.

Calvin Gladney
President & CEO, Smart Growth America

Kevin Wright
Principal, YARD & Company

Brenda M. Breaux
Executive Director, New Orleans Redevelopment Authority

Christopher J. Tyson
President & CEO, East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority

Moderator: Tara Wicker
Councilwoman, District 10, City of Baton Rouge- Parish of East Baton Rouge


Remarks by governor john bel edwards

Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards makes remarks on the importance of planning to help leave our state a better place for our children and grandchildren.

Governor John Bel Edwards
State of Louisiana

Introduced by: Camille Manning-Broome
President & CEO, Center for Planning Excellence


closing plenary: future of transit and mobility

As congestion worsens in metros across the globe, environmental concerns continue to grow, and more and more people are geographically isolated from centers of opportunity, how is transit changing to address these challenges? What stands in the way of making high-functioning transit available to those who need it most? What are the opportunities for shifting from the transit we have to the transit we need? Our expert panel will explore the current state and near future of transit at the state, regional and national level.

John Robert Smith
Chairman, Transportation for America; Senior Policy Advisor to Smart Growth America; former Mayor of Meridian, MS

Calvin Gladney
President & CEO, Smart Growth America

Shawn Wilson, PhD
Secretary, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development

Moderator: John Spain
Executive Vice President, Baton Rouge Area Foundation; CPEX Board Member




opening plenary: the color of law

Richard Rothstein’s talk and the response by local leaders in equitable housing offers a unique opportunity to understand how land use policy has institutionalized longstanding racial discrimination and segregation. Join a conversation about proactive approaches to righting the course for the future.

Richard Rothstein
Research Associate, Economic Policy Institute and a Fellow at the Thurgood Marshall Institute of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund; Fellow, Haas Institute at the University of California- Berkley; author, “The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America”

Jonathan Leit
Director, New Orleans Office at Alembic Community Development

Andreanecia Morris
Executive Director, HousingNOLA

Ashley K. Shelton
Executive Director, The Power Coalition; CPEX Board Member

Moderator: Christopher J. Tyson
President & CEO, East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority


lunch plenary: doing better blocks: from demonstration to implementation

The Better Block model has generated a lot of excitement and resulted in some important implementation wins, such as the Government Street re-design in Baton Rouge. How can we take the Better Block concept to the next level in our communities? We’ll talk about how to bridge the gap between a demonstration project and the desired capital improvement project that is likely years down the road and how to leverage public investments to provide the greatest community benefit.

Jason Roberts
Originator, National Better Block Project

Dan Favre
Executive Director, Bike Easy

Justin Lemoine
Owner, ELS Landscape Architecture Studio

Moderator: Kelsey Kornick Funes
Partner, Phelps Dunbar LLP; CPEX Board Member


building cities for the future

Building cities for the future will require different tools, different partnerships, and a different vision than the past. Hear how experts on the cutting edge of resilient city design, infrastructure, finance and policy to help us think big about what’s needed and what’s next.

Joseph Andrew Kohl
Founding Principal, Dover, Kohl & Partners

Christopher Forinash
Principal& Washington DC Office Lead, Nelson\ Nygaard Consulting Associates

Katie Wholey
Consultant, Resilience Arup

Mark Goodson
Principal, Resilience Practice Lead, CSRS

Moderator: Flozell Daniels, Jr.
President & CEO, Foundation for Louisiana


Closing Plenary: justice, art & people-centric planning

Veronica Davis, co-owner and principal of Nspiregreen and co-founder of Black Women Bike, shares her vision for People-Centric Planning founded on an approach to planning that is creative and focused on community-building. Veronica is a transportation guru with experience in urban planning and civil engineering who uses her knowledge to spark progressive social change by putting people back into civil infrastructure planning.

Veronica O. Davis
Co-owner and Principal Planning Manager, Nspiregreen LLC; Co-founder, Black Women Bike

Introduced by: Cordell Haymon
Senior Vice President, Petroleum Service Corporation, an SGS Company; CPEX Board Chair

Moderator: Erika L. Green
Councilwoman, District 5, City of Baton Rouge - Parish of East Baton Rouge