Sustain Charlotte members share priorities for air quality in Mecklenburg County

At our May Grow Smart CLT event, attendees were focused on air quality, and what they can do to improve the air we all breathe. We were excited to have staff from Mecklenburg County Air Quality Division at the event, collecting public input on the Division’s priorities for air quality. During the networking time before the program, attendees were able to provide input by dropping marbles into glass jars, each labelled with a different potential priority. The potential focus areas included transit expansion, complete streets, airport shuttle electrification, and much more. Air Quality Division will take that input and use it to help inform the initiatives they pursue next to improve our air quality. We were also thrilled to have Sun Raised Farms at the event, handing out delicious food samples! Huge thanks to all the staff and owners for being part of the event! Continue reading

ACTION ALERT: Support Groundbreaking 2019 City Budget for Active Transportation!

Help your City go the last mile to fund critical transportation programs! On Monday, May 7, City Manager Marcus Jones presented the preliminary budget for Fiscal Year 2019 to City Council.  Read the document, executive summary, and presentation here! After continued advocacy in partnership with many concerned citizens, we are thrilled to announce that the Fiscal Year 2019 proposed budget positions Charlotte to take a huge step to advance active transportation!   Continue reading

Senior Mobility Survey

Are you a Senior? Want to improve transportation options in our community? Please take our survey and share it with other seniors! We'll use the results to help inform our work to empower neighborhoods and senior residents to address the challenges they're seeing in the community. The last week to complete the survey is the week of June 25-30th, so please share with your friends, family, and networks.        

Sustain Charlotte coordinates demonstration projects at Open Streets 704

We hope you were one of the 30,000 people who came out to support Open Streets 704 on Sunday, April 29th!  The route extended four miles from Plaza Midwood all the way to up to NoDA.   Sustain Charlotte is proud of our increased involvement in the Open Streets 704 program.  Our Bicycle Program Manager Kate Cavazza served as the demonstration project manager for the recent event. We organized and hosted three projects on the route.  We successfully advocated for a partial protected bike lane on Parkwood Avenue that provided a safe connection between Brevard Street to Davidson Street. We also placed several public engagement boards at bus stops and gathered important information on how better to improve the experience for riders. People walked and biked through the streets of NoDA during Open Streets 704. Continue reading

Charlotte City Council Environment Committee Looks at Plan for Low Carbon Future

The Charlotte City Council Environment Committee is working on a plan to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Charlotte. Solar panels atop IKEA in Charlotte (Photo credit: Continue reading

Sustain Charlotte honors top sustainability leaders at annual Charlotte Sustainability Awards

Each year we honor local sustainability leaders who are leading the way for a more sustainable future through our Charlotte Sustainability Awards. We are proud to have been able to honor 38 incredible nominees at our 2018 event, on April 25th. Of those 38 nominees, five were selected by our independent panel of judges as winners, and were presented with awards by NC Senator Jeff Jackson. Charlene Mack, Chair of Equitable Transportation Team of the West Boulevard Coalition Continue reading

City Council Transportation and Planning Committee Examines Vision for South End and UDO Process

At the April 23rd Charlotte City Council Transportation and Planning Committee meeting, Ed McKinney from the Planning Department provided an overview of the South End Vision Plan. You can watch a stream of the meeting here. The plan is scheduled to be finalized in early May, after which it will again go before the Transportation and Planning Committee with a goal of full council adoption by the end of May. Photo credit: Continue reading

Big win for pedestrians as City Council passes sidewalk amendments

Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to the more than 50 people who responded to our action alert by emailing or calling their Charlotte City Council members to voice support for a complete sidewalk network. Together, we did it! At last night's meeting, Council voted 9-2 in support of two amendments to the sidewalk ordinance that close critical loopholes. The amendments will ensure that quality sidewalks are built when re-development occurs on high-traffic streets. Quality sidewalks support all street users! (photo from Charlotte WALKS Plan) Continue reading

Sustain Charlotte partners with Livable Meck and IKEA on food waste events

Did you know that the average American household spends $1,500 on food that ends up uneaten? Sustain Charlotte recently partnered with Livable Meck to co-host a workshop on the topic of food waste and sustainability. Our program director Meg Fencil explains the connection between food waste, sustainability, and equity. Household expenses, health, and environment The median Charlotte household spends 29% of their income on housing and another 22% on transportation. For many households, food is their third-highest expense. When a large percentage of that food is wasted, it places an extra financial strain on the household. That means less money is available for other household needs. Denada Jackson from Solid Waste Services and David Valder from Crown Town Compost educated the audience about the environmental and health impacts of excessive food waste. When food and other organic material decomposes in the landfill, it generates methane, which is 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. However, when food is composted and decomposes in the presence of oxygen, it generates carbon dioxide instead of methane. In other words: a composted banana has a much smaller carbon footprint than a landfilled banana. Continue reading

Action Alert: Closing dangerous sidewalk gaps

UPDATE: The agenda for the April 23 Council meeting is now posted with this issue as Agenda Item #19. View the amendment language here. Want to speak to Council about the amendments immediately prior to the vote? Register to speak here.  We sent the following action alert to our members on Monday, April 16: On Monday, April 23, the Charlotte City Council will vote on amendments to the sidewalk ordinance that would ensure quality sidewalks are built when land is redeveloped. Twenty-seven pedestrians were killed walking along and trying to cross City streets in 2017. This is the highest number ever in Charlotte. We simply can’t afford to continue to build without sidewalks! I urge you to contact your Charlotte City Council members today to affirm your support for closing two critical loopholes that allow redevelopment to occur without quality sidewalks being built. Continue reading