Project Recognition Program

Recognized Projects » Project Recognition Program

Smart Growth Recognition Application:

Narrative:  Please complete a project narrative utilizing the outline below as a guideline.  The narrative should contain the name of the developer, the name of the project, the project’s location and its stage of approval/development.  The narrative shall be no more than 750 words, describing clearly and concisely how your project addresses each of the recognition criteria highlighted below.

Drawings:  Please provide pdf drawings, at your discretion, that convey your project.  Illustrative drawings are encouraged, including site plans showing storm water management locations as well as perspective renderings.  Working drawings are not necessary, unless required to convey proposed sustainability criteria.

Presentation:  Please prepare a brief (no more than 15 slides) PowerPoint Presentation for the project highlighting the proposed design for your project including a summation of the approvals process to date.  This presentation does not need to be submitted with your application, but should be ready at the time of your meeting with the DVSGA Jury.  Please be prepared to field detailed questions from the Jury, which will be tailored to the level of entitlements/approvals the project is seeking.


The proposed project based recognition is successive, meaning if that anytime a project fails to meet the criteria as ordered; it does not move on and would fail to receive recognition.  The criteria are viewed as Smart Growth priorities, and therefore start with Location which is intended to confirm that the project’s site is an appropriate Smart Growth priority location, i.e. within an area targeted for growth, within a well-defined village, town, or city center, or is a mixed use/transit oriented development.

Mobility follows Location as even urban/suburban infill projects must at least address the needs to reduce reliance on the automobile, whether through reduced parking ratios or proximity to mass transit opportunities.

After mobility, Urban Design addresses the contribution of physical design to Smart Growth.  Of importance here is that while a project’s location and access to transit/reduction in automobile usage is critical, if a project provides a poor public realm and does not enhance pedestrian culture, than it would not reach recognition status.  In other words, transit adjacency is not enough, a project located near a train station must be transit oriented.

Environment follows Urban Design.  Here is where LEED, NAHB Green, Energy Star, etc. come into play.   While we are not advocating that a project must achieve some level of Green Building certification as a pre-requisite, we are requiring some attention be paid to best practices in that area, including the provision that some aspects of green building technologies be included.  We are paying special attention to energy and to storm water as much of the current environmental regulation is based in CO2 reduction and improving water quality.

Finally, there is Community.  If a project has successfully navigated its way through the recognition Framework to community, we believe it important that a project’s sponsor paid some level of attention to the project’s social context, whether that be through an integrated outreach process prior or during entitlement involving the surrounding community, or through the provision of some other tangible public benefits.

Submission:  There is a submission fee of $1,000 which should be sent to DVSGA.  A lesser fee will be considered for small or not-for-profit projects. 1801 Market St., Suite 630, Philadelphia, PA 19103.  Please submit the application material, as a single multi-page PDF electronically to:


December 1 (Jury meets early January)
March 1 (Jury meets early April)
June 1 (Jury meets early July)
September 1 (Jury meets early October)