LAS VEGAS – “Livable Centers” are a recent phenomenon that ‘center’ around offering residents a variety of options which help promote and facilitate a healthy, active lifestyle; North Las Vegas’ Deer Springs district has decided that this may give their community a significant commercial boost, and to that end they are dedicating grant monies into a study to see if a Livable Center in their backyard is a good fit.
Livable Centers are vibrant, walk-able places where people can live, work, and play with less reliance on their cars. Livable Centers, with concentrations of residential and employment, support more trips by foot, bicycle, transit, or carpool. Funded via financial grants provided by the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada are intended to assist communities looking to spur local economic development; Deer Springs’ study will work with the local community to identify specific recommendations, such as pedestrian and bicycle facilities, that can help spark the potential creation of a Livable Center.
If approved, most of the construction going into the Livable Center will be new, especially considering the fact that a majority of the Deer Springs area is currently awaiting development. Local officials are hopeful that a progressive and environmentally friendly project, such as a fully-functioning Livable Center, will attract businesses, jobs, and entertainment options into the region enabling it to grow and expand and, ultimately, create an environment that will bring in more families wanting to live here.
Before the mid-2000’s recession, the Deer Springs district was home to several businesses however once the recession hit the area dried up and many businesses either closed up shop or moved elsewhere. With the recent economic boom in Southern Nevada, local developers believe there is opportunity capitalize on the upward trend exhibited in both the real estate and job markets.
The benefits of Livable Centers include:
- Less Time on the Road: By concentrating destinations, Livable Centers study areas reduce an estimated 416,541 single-occupancy vehicle trips daily.
- Employment Opportunities: From 2009-2013, Livable Centers study areas saw 17.5% job growth, outpacing the overall 8-county region’s job growth rate of 11.7%.
- Economic Impact: As of May 2015, a total of $197,041,186 in locally sponsored capital improvements had been made in Livable Centers study areas. An additional $272,146,008 are planned or programmed.
Deer Springs officials noted that they hope to complete their Livable Center study and present their findings to the North Las Vegas city council in June of this year; the report is slated to include strategies derived from the study that are intended to guide the development of the project – including transportation and other forms of access, should it be approved by officials.
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