How to Use This Toolkit

Welcome to the Smart Growth/Smart Energy Toolkit! We have designed this Toolkit to be comprehensive and user-friendly. The Toolkit is intended to be both an educational guide and a reference document. It can be used to introduce newcomers to smart growth/smart energy and by practitioners such as planners, developers and site and building designers as a resource for case studies and model bylaws.

It is organized to look like a website with a homepage as a starting point. The Toolkit can then be navigated along several different paths to be selected by the user. One can proceed by "module" and subsequently access the associated case studies, model bylaw, PowerPoint slide shows and brochure specific to that topic. Alternatively, the user can go directly to view all of the case studies by navigating with the side button on the homepage. They can proceed to a map showing all of the case studies and then access the case studies via that route.

To promote ease of use key terms are highlighted in blue and can be clicked on to go to a glossary for definitions. Also, many of the graphics are designed to enlarge when clicked on.

The Toolkit contains model bylaws for many of the smart growth/smart energy techniques. In many cases, regulatory changes will be required at the local governmental level to implement the techniques. The model bylaws provide a framework or starting point for communities to draft the necessary laws. They contain recommended regulatory language as well as numerous annotations (shown in blue highlighted boxes) which provide guidance on how to customize the bylaws to best fit a community's needs. The bylaws are not intended to be adopted as is, but rather provide an approach for a community to follow in developing its own bylaw. We strongly recommend involving the community's legal counsel when developing the final bylaw or ordinance.

PowerPoint slide shows are available for smart energy and smart growth proponents to make presentations to developers, site planners and the public at meetings and hearings. They can also be used to assist town meeting/city council voters who are considering adopting bylaws/ordinances. For some of the techniques slide shows have been formulated to address a range of potential users; introductory, developer's perspective and local authority's perspective. While most slides contain captions, presenters should first familiarize themselves with the content by carefully reading the narratives associated with each technique, the case studies, and the bylaws.

The case studies have been selected to demonstrate implementation of the smart growth/smart energy techniques. For the most part, they are Massachusetts examples. In some cases out-of-state examples are utilized where the practices are better exemplified. We have made an effort to include a range of case study settings for each technique including rural, suburban and urban.