Restoring Prosperity in Older Industrial Cities
This working group focuses on three key areas of policy and practice, and three key levels of engagement.
- Transportation and land use
- Neighborhood revitalization
- Economic development
- Federal and state policy
- Capacity building
- Local/regional models and practice
Although communities across North America are adapting to the challenges presented by the combined impacts of the economic recession, foreclosure crisis, and sprawling patterns of development, America’s older industrial cities face critical circumstances as they deal with new economic realities. To thrive and prosper in the future, these cities are considering a range of options for addressing population declines, vacant properties, economic development, and much more.
- Educating funders about key issues and promising practices for older industrial cities (capitalizing on the Brookings Institution’s 2007 report, “Restoring Prosperity: The State Role in Revitalizing America’s Older Industrial Cities”); and
- Leveraging foundation support to invest in policy reform at the federal level and in targeted states.
The working group convenes an annual meeting each fall, hosts topical Learning Network conference calls and content sessions at Funders’ Network events, manages a funder listserv, tracks and supports statewide policy advocacy and capacity building, and monitors federal policy and practice pertaining to older industrial cities. In December 2012, the working group began a learning group to explore the economic impact of anchor institutions and their role as drivers of local economies, particularly with respect to income and job creation and opportunties for funder/anchor institution collaboration.