Who Are We?
Since the birth of the organization, these citizens of good will continue to assist politicians in roadway decisions and recommend environmental enhancements.
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth is a movement of citizens from Madison, Monroe, and St. Clair counties who share a vision for their communities and actively promote that vision. This website links thousands in a common cause.
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth is committed to advocacy at many levels:
This website lets anyone sign an electronic petition, get updated information, link to allied organizations and find ways to help bring this vision into reality. Individuals may sign up to receive regular e-mail updates by clicking here.
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth has neither a membership list nor dues, but depends on contributions of money, material, time, and talent.
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth is open to new ideas and insights and welcomes all individuals and organizations who wish to be part of this movement.
Smart growth, where townships, cities, and counties coordinate plans and use resources cooperatively to improve the quality of our common life:
our attention is focused on the entire region, not
on just the rich, outer rim of our metropolitan
Preserving, strengthening, and enhancing the quality of life in Metro-East, where residents do not want to become a mirror image of west St. Louis. Residents value their communities, schools, and neighborhoods and do not believe bigger is better when it comes to these or to city governments, tax bases, or commercialization.
Residents cherish the unique character of the Metro-East and with its generally lower land cost, value, proximity to St. Louis, unique culture, schools, and heritage. They value a mixed environment of rural, small towns, cities, and neighborhoods with less congestion. They wish to preserve, strengthen and enhance these qualities, not sacrifice them to enrich a few at the expense of many, nor accommodate the inappropriate agenda of some politicians.
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth believes rampant, uncontrolled growth is neither inevitable nor desirable. The propaganda line, growth is inevitable is an admission of our failure to plan properly and is used as a false justification for waste and greed.
The Gateway Connector or 158 Outer-belt is a proposed 41 mile, limited-access, four lane highway from Troy City to the Jefferson Barracks Bridge being promoted by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT).
Stop158: Citizens for Smart Growth says the feasibility study fails to justify this massive project in all three counts:
Traffic mobility: The outer-belt is based on faulty projections, which over-estimated traffic volume. The planning model used by the feasibility study is being abandoned. Further, it is well established that additional roads generate additional traffic: build it and they will come. Another massive road feeding existing east-west interstates is overkill. A number of existing roadways are under-utilized. Existing roadways properly maintained and improved can manage current and future traffic flows. Center (turn) lanes and intersections with long right and left turn lanes can be added as needed to existing roads.
Economic growth is critical to the core cities. But the Connector will not bring economic growth to the core cities. Growth occurring in the outer rim of Metro-East is at the expense of core cities and reflects population and business relocation, not net growth. This means:
Enhance the environment: the Connector cannot enhance the environment, but it would compound many environmental problems, including urban sprawl for which St. Louis is notorious. The Brookings Institution reports St. Louis has the countrys second worst imbalance between land use and population. The Connector would accelerate that problem, bringing;