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Grow Smart to Honor Sweetbriar

The West Barrington affordable-housing complex will be recognized on June 10 at the second annual RI Smart Growth Award presentation.

Saying there’s no better way to promote the many benefits of smart growth than to profile successful local examples, Grow Smart Rhode Island will honor and celebrate individuals, plans and projects that play to Rhode Island’s strengths, generate sustainable economic benefits and improve communities and neighborhoods in the process. 

The Sweetbriar affordable-housing development in Barrington is one of the Outstanding Smart Growth Projects that will be recognized at the second annual Rhode Island Smart Growth Award presentation on June 10. 

The Monday evening reception and ceremony will start at 5:30 pm at the Hope Artiste Village in Pawtucket -- itself a 2012 award-winner for its redeveloped mill space that is home to more than 90 business tenants. 

The public was invited to nominate candidates, and a selection committee made up of Grow Smart Board members and staff made the final selections.

The Sweetbriar community, developed by the East Bay Community Development Corporation in Bristol, demonstrates the importance of good design in earning community support for affordable housing, according to Grow Smart.

The development consists of 23 freestanding buildings with 47 affordable rental units that are affordable to households earning 50 percent to 60 percent of area median income.  It is located on the site of the former West Barrington Middle School.

Grow Smart describes as "a very livable neighborhood for its residents and offers the convenience of public transit access to a variety of destinations, including a grocery store. Once a target of intense community opposition, Sweetbriar’s attractively designed and well-cared-for homes have won approval from many former nay-sayers."

In addition to an awards ceremony, the June 10 event will feature a keynote address by Mayor Marilyn Strickland of Tacoma, Wash., drawing connections between smart growth and economic development in her city. Mayor Strickland and Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian are colleagues on Smart Growth America’s Local Leaders Council Advisory Board.

 Tickets to attend the reception are $50 and can be reserved by clicking here.

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