Grow Smart Bay Area is Greenbelt Alliance’s set of goals for our region to become more climate-friendly, affordable, and economically competitive, while protecting our natural and agricultural lands. By 2035, we call for:
- Fully protecting the Bay Area’s 3.6 million-acre greenbelt;
- Directing all new development into already urbanized areas;
- Accomplishing both in a way that equitably benefits all Bay Area residents.
To achieve our Grow Smart goals, our strategic plan focuses on three areas.
The Bay Area’s famous natural landscapes shelter wildlife, foster healthy lifestyles, and attract visitors from all over the world. Poorly planned growth can put our treasured open spaces at risk. At Greenbelt Alliance, we believe development done right can not only make our cities and towns wonderful, it will preserve our famous open spaces for generations to come. Read more.
Homes and Neighborhoods
Many of us live in the Bay Area because of its great neighborhoods. We love the lively streets, parks, and diversity of residents. As more people move to the Bay Area for all of these reasons, demand for housing will continue to outpace supply—unless we grow smart. As the region grows, we need to ensure that the right development happens in the right places and that we create neighborhoods that people are proud to call home. Just as important, we need to ensure that improvements don’t ignore existing residents, and that we plan for housing for residents at all income levels. Read more.
Local Farms and Ranches
Fresh, locally grown food not only pleases the palate, it also feeds the local economy. Yet, farmers and ranchers still face pressures to pave over their land. Farms and ranches make up 60 percent of the Bay Area open space currently at risk of development. Greenbelt Alliance is protecting farms and ranches from sprawl and leading efforts to conserve and steward farmland. Read more.
Why These Three?
We know this is a broad range of issues. Why are we taking them all on? Because they are all connected and critical to ensuring the right development happens in the right places—including stopping sprawl where development doesn’t belong. Greenbelt Alliance is the only Bay Area organization that looks holistically at land-use issues across our region, including land conservation, smart growth, and the intersection of these two realms.