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Smart Growth Communities

Smart Communties

Smart Growth for Rural Communities
Smart Growth for Rural Communities

Smart Growth for Small Towns relates the principles of Smart Growth to towns and rural communities, providing examples, discussion, explanation and advice on community design and development.

The educational information provided on this site is intended to contribute to an understanding of the intent and purpose of the Smart Growth principles. However, planning for the future of our small towns requires input from a variety of fields and includes issues of design, policy making, and governance. This series is focused primarily upon design issues associated with small towns and is intended to serve as a resource for government officials, teachers, designers, and the general public.

The explanation of each Smart Growth principle includes the following:

  1. Discussion of the purpose of the principles and why it is important.
  2. Strategies that communities can use to help achieve the goals of the principle.


(Click Link for .pdf brief)


  1. Mix land uses
  2. Take advantage of compact building design
  3. Create a range of housing opportunities and choices
  4. Create walkable neighborhoods
  5. Foster distinctive, attractive communities with a strong sense of place
  6. Preserve open space, farmland, natural beauty, and critical environmental areas
  7. Strengthen and direct development toward existing communities
  8. Provide a variety of transportation choices
  9. Make development decisions predictable, fair, and cost effective
  10. Encourage community and stakeholder collaboration in development decisions

Smart Growth for Small Towns is a cooperative project between the Extension Service faculty of the Department of Landscape Architecture and the Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development at Mississippi State University.

For more information contact Jeremy Murdock, Research Associate at or Michael Seymour, Associate Extension Professor at