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Andy Levin: ‘Lean & Green’ Can Help Efficiency, Clean Energy Soar

Efficiency First | July 2, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Andy Levin urges local leaders to adopt an ordinance he designed based on a 2010 state law, known as PACE, that would put tradesmen to work on efficiency and renewables projects for local businesses to boost their profits without spending public dollars. “PACE” means Property Assessed Clean Energy. It allows local governments to raise bonds to finance energy efficiency and renewable energy projects for local firms—and use special property tax assessments for paying off the loans....

‘Bike-n-ride’ Bus Service to Suttons Bay Kicks Off Today

Choices | July 1, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

Northern Michigan’s robust trail network brings with it one challenge: So many bikes, but not enough space on the bus when you need a lift....

Double Up Food Bucks give needy a leg up

Healthy Food for All | June 29, 2013 | By Diane Conners

The statewide, nonprofit program helps financially struggling families eat healthy while supporting business for farmers. It doubles the money that people who receive SNAP Bridge Card assistance (food stamps) have to spend with local farmers at farmers markets. That means it’s helping federal dollars governed by the Farm Bill have much more of an impact on local farm economies than, say, the grocery section at Walmart....

Join us and rally to protect the Great Lakes

Rally, Event | June 28, 2013 | By Jim Lively

MLUI and TC350, a dedicated group of local activists, are organizing "Oil & Water Don't Mix: A Rally for the Great Lakes," set for July 14 at the Bridge View Park in St. Ignace next to the Mackinac Bridge. It's an incredible opportunity to raise awareness about climate change and the dangers posed by an oil pipeline that runs through the Mackinac Straits....

Expanding program measures energy efficiency of homes

Efficiency First | June 28, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

Most people stop and think about the miles per gallon rating before buying a car, but don’t consider the “energy mileage” they get from their homes....

Google Saves Big By Offering Bus Passes, Specialist Says

Choices | June 26, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

One of the benefits you’re offered on your first day as a Google employee in downtown Ann Arbor is a financial incentive to leave your car at home. Mary Sell told the audience at the Getting Transportation to Work Commuter Summit in Traverse City earlier this month that the company offers one of the best commuter incentive packages in the city....

A Summer of Smart Commuting: The BATA Connection

Choices | June 25, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

Just outside of Traverse City you can find so many wonderful areas to explore. I don’t think that I need to remind anyone that this corner of Michigan is full of unique towns, open farmland, and beautiful wilderness areas....

The Regional Rider: ‘Moving Forward’ Edition

Regional Rider | June 20, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

If you missed the Getting Transportation to Work Commuter Summit, you missed the best transportation event of the year....

Mike Hayes: GLE Co-op Must Heed Calls for More Clean Energy

Power to Change | June 19, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Mike Hayes is retired, but he’s not taking it easy. Recently he helped organize Mancelona’s community garden and construction of its new farmers market pavilion. Now Hayes is running for the Great Lakes Energy co-op’s board of directors....

A Summer of Smart Commuting: Hitting the Trail

Choices | June 19, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

I successfully made it out to Suttons Bay this past weekend, and I have some good news and some bad....

Residents Can Shape Traverse City's Transportation Future

Choices | June 14, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

Smart Commute Week got a lot of people thinking about the ups and downs of transportation in Traverse City. ...

MLUI Position: Cass Road Bridge, existing roads, should be priorities

MLUI News, MLUI Position | June 13, 2013 | By MLUI

The Michigan Land Use Institute and several environmental groups are on record supporting the replacement of Cass Road Bridge as an integral crossing for businesses, residents and local schools. MLUI continues to oppose the Hartman-Hammond project as too environmentally damaging, more expensive than other viable and publicly supported alternatives, and contrary to findings of the comprehensive Grand Vision Land Use and Transportation Study....

Mary Brower: More Renewables, Efficiency for Great Lakes Energy

Power to Change | June 12, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Mary Brower is running for the Great Lakes Energy Cooperative board of directors because she wants her utility to embrace the future—particularly moving beyond coal power to more renewable energy and energy efficiency. Great Lakes Energy members will receive a ballot for their board of directors election in the July-August issue of the co-op’s magazine, Country Lines, which hits mailboxes soon. Brower recently took a break from her daily farm chores to speak by phone about her campaign to persuade fellow co-op members to check her name on the ballot and mail it in....

Stanford’s Cost Saving Lesson: Parking Doesn’t Pay

Choices | June 12, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

In the late 1990s, Stanford University found a way to trim the mounting costs of providing a high quality education: Pay university staff to leave their cars parked at home. Locally, Northwestern Michigan College recently unveiled a new master plan, which calls for an additional 244 parking spaces to accommodate an expanding technical education program and double the amount of student housing. Are there any lessons local college officials can learn from the California university?...

View of public transit is changing nationally and locally

Choices | June 12, 2013 | By Howard Lovy

Back in 2009, some of the bumpers on BATA buses in Traverse City were held together with duct tape. Today, the 75-strong BATA bus fleet is taking more commuters than ever before to and from their jobs. They did this by adding routes and providing services that "fit residents' lifestyles," according to BATA's business development director. This caught the attention of Jeffrey Tumlin: It is fortunate "you have a transit operator that really gets it."...

A Summer of Smart Commuting

Choices | June 11, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

I celebrated Smart Commute Week by riding my bike to work every day this week—except on Tuesday when I kayaked to work with my colleague Jim Sluyter. But for me, Smart Commuting didn't end on Friday. ...

Central Grade Youth Garden: A Planting Party

Farm to School | June 10, 2013 | By Zoë McAlear

Despite chilly temperatures and the constant threat of rain from the dark skies, Central Grade School was buzzing with activity on June 2nd as teachers and faculty, parents, and students came together to celebrate their new school garden and participate in some spring planting....

Expert: Real opportunities for transportation choices in TC

Choices | June 7, 2013 | By Howard Lovy

Tumlin said building up rural highways encourages people to leave "walkable cities" and gives people no option but to continue driving from one parking lot to another, creating hazardous conditions on roads that were built to accommodate rural traffic....

Introducing MLUI Intern Zoe McAlear

MLUI News | May 30, 2013 | By Zoe McAlear

We are happy to introduce our new summer intern, Zoë McAlear. She’ll be helping out in our communications department, so you’ll be seeing her name pop up often over the next two months. Rather than let us tell you about her, here’s a brief introduction in her own words. ...

Next Week’s Commuter Summit: Meet the Speakers

Choices | May 30, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

Traverse City will welcome two special guests for next Tuesday’s Getting Transportation to Work Commuter Summit. Mary Sell is the Commuter Services Specialist for GetDowntown Ann Arbor, and Jeff Tumlin is a national transportation expert and parking guru. ...

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