We often inherit a complicated relationship with the neighborhoods adjacent to the traditional downtown core. Those adjacent neighborhoods are sometimes very different in history and composition – the buildings are likely older, the land is less developed, and the community less affluent. The neighborhoods may be separated from downtown by historic and political barriers, including racist and exclusionary policies and years of broken economic development promises.
With the urban renaissance of the last two decades, many downtowns are now bordered by districts that have evolved either into extensions and/or competitors to the traditional core. In this session, panelists will explore the ways in which UPMOs have been addressing this phenomenon through the three ‘lenses’ of retail, connectivity and equity, while also placing it within the context of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and other current events.
Carol Coletta leads the relaunch of Memphis River Parks Partnership, a nonprofit developing, managing and programming six miles of riverfront and five park districts. Previously, she led the two-year start-up of ArtPlace, a unique public-private collaboration to accelerate creative placemaking in communities across the U.S. and was President & CEO of CEOs for Cities for seven years.
Every community needs housing options that meet a diversity of incomes and lifestyles. The Housing Attainability Top Issues Council report demonstrates how urban place management organizations of all sizes and resource levels can play a role in encouraging more housing at a variety of price points and of varying styles.
In recent years, housing costs in Portland have been rising as the city becomes increasingly attractive within the State of Maine and as compared to other regions nationally. There has been little development of new housing affordable to current Portland residents and very little construction of new housing at all between 2007 and 2014. To address the issues of housing availability and affordability the City of Portland adopted a host of strategic policies and initiatives.
In 2015, Charlotte’s downtown association, Charlotte Center City Partners, was invited by neighborhood advocates to catalyze a multi-year partnership effort to transform the Historic West End of Charlotte corridor. However, in West End, long-tenured residents and businesses threatened by rising property values feel this pressure acutely as they face predatory investors and find very limited affordable housing options for those who wish to move but stay in the neighborhood.
Gentrification and displacement of residents and businesses is a key issue facing communities as they grow and change, particularly for immigrants, refugees and communities of color. Learn from policymakers with urban district experience how place managers can partner to help preserve the essence of place, culture, and community – utilizing strategies like workforce investment, community wealth building, equitable development, business estate planning, nonprofit capacity building and more
Inclusive city building is a core value we all share and yet the path forward is not completely clear. Whether we are thinking in terms of our districts or of the place management profession, the strategies and tools for reaching our own expectations for diversity and equity are unwritten. The conversation begins in Baltimore and you are invited to participate in a round table discussion exploring ways to best move ahead and take a leadership role so everyone can see a place where they belong.
The Lower Polk Tenant Landlord Clinic is an innovative homelessness prevention program serving the historic Lower Polk district of San Francisco, CA. The clinic’s primary mission is to help vulnerable residents save their homes by avoiding eviction. Known affectionately as “TLC,” the program brings together a coalition of experts in myriad disciplines to address the diverse needs of the target at-risk populations. In its first year of operation, TLC helped 87 people save their homes.
The Community Redevelopment Agency’s (CRA) Parramore Housing Infill Program is specifically designed to increase homeownership in areas which have characteristically been difficult to develop due to aging housing stock, widespread non-conforming lots sizes, and antiquated infrastructure. Each home incorporates green building components and quality context-specific design, meeting the specific needs of Parramore residents.
Albus Brooks is the Vice President of Business Development and Strategy for Milender White, a development and construction firm operating in Southern California and Colorado. Serving two terms on Denver City Council, including two terms as Council President, Albus accomplished an ambitious range of progressive legislative victories with the goal of building a truly inclusive city.
Andrea Batista Schlesinger leads the Inclusive Cities practice at HR&A Advisors. As a former leader in government, think tanks, philanthropy, and politics, Andrea uniquely understands the capacity and role of government, advocacy, and philanthropy in making cities just and dynamic places. Her current work focuses on supporting equitable economic development and removing barriers to opportunity for all communities in cities.
Gabriel Metcalf is the President & CEO of SPUR. Under his leadership, SPUR has grown dramatically in influence and membership. Before becoming head of SPUR 2005, Gabe headed up SPUR’s policy and advocacy work for five years. A prolific writer and speaker, Gabriel earned his Master’s degree in city planning from the University of California, Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design.
David Dixon leads Stantec’s Urban Places Group, an interdisciplinary practice committed to helping cities and suburbs alike manage the accelerating pace of social, economic, and environmental change for community benefit. During his master talk at the 62nd Annual Conference & Tradeshow in Atlanta, Georgia, Sept. 7-9, 2016, David explored the challenges in building an equitable city.
Michael Berne is one of North America’s foremost experts in Downtown and Main Street retail. As President of MJB Consulting (MJB), he has worked in cities and towns across the U.S., Canada and the U.K., and he has also spoken and written extensively on the subject. He is currently penning a chapter to a forthcoming volume on Suburban Downtowns and writing a book on “A New Retail Paradigm for the City Center.”
In many cities and downtowns our newfound success is leading to high housing costs, spiraling labor rates and the rapid gentrification of neighborhoods. Without interventions to promote affordable housing, stabilize neighborhoods, workforce training, public education and other social equity measures, many cities are at risk of losing what makes them authentic, and arguably the DNA for their economic vitality. Downtown organizations have a role in this debate and can help shape local policies.
There is an ever-widening array of policy tools that cities in California and beyond have already implemented or are considering in an effort to regulate retail mixes and slow tenant displacement in rapidly-gentrifying or already-gentrified business districts. With some of these, enough time has even elapsed that we can now start to analyze outcomes.
Some of the industry’s top retail experts outline what it means to have a diverse retail mix and how the demographic inversion of downtowns puts ethnically diverse retail at risk.
Community improvements made by a variety of stakeholders often disproportionately benefit property owners who do not contribute their fair share. In many instances property owners become millionaires on the back of the work and investment of others. This presentation walks through a scenario where a property owner with a property assessed at $650 thousand is selling for $3.2 million, breaking down the community improvements that have lifted the property’s sale value.
IDA’s Advisory Panels are a time-tested way to explore new ideas, solve difficult problems, and rally the board, staff and community around priority projects or topics. This panel was focused on workforce housing demand and social equity, as well as physical connections in central city and oppertunities for collaboration on housing issues among various community development organizations. The report details the panel’s findings and recommendations.
Throughout 2018, the Inclusive Places Council explored the role of place management organizations in navigating challenges around social equity and inclusion in rapidly transforming cities. In this workshop the Inclusive Places Council will share toolkits and best practices around creating more inclusive public realm and organizations.
Diversity creates excitement, vibrancy, and economic resilience, and can be the heart of a successful urban center offering a place to combat discrimination and social isolation. BIA’s can play an active role in ensuring commercial districts are inclusive places for all people. This panel provides examples from three BIA’s on how to create welcoming urban centers for all.