Lincoln South of Downtown (LSOD) Neighborhood Sustainability Implementation

Year Complete: 2018
Grant Amount: $75,000
Local Government: City of Lincoln, NE
Local Foundation: Lincoln Community Foundation

Project Purpose

To implement sustainability elements of a multi-year neighborhood planning process in an area of extreme poverty and diversity.

Key Lessons Learned

Lessons learned about tools and tactics through the project that other sustainability directors could use to advance their work.

Onboarding community partners early was key to creating a successful strategy in affecting a grass roots, bottom-up system for change. Build in time for community engagement. This plan was developed over a 17-month process through multiple public meetings, interviews, online surveys, flyers, and social media that resulted in 43,351 stakeholder ‘touches’. The Community Development Organization now serves as the hub for neighborhood stakeholder participation and engagement.

Lessons for developing a collaborative process between a local government sustainability director and local place-based foundation(s).

Collaboration was critical for implementation. Make sure to build in time for working through compliance and governance structures as this can slow the process.

Additional Information and Resources

The collaborative improved pedestrian safety and green infrastructure through bike lane striping, energy efficient pedestrian lighting, and reforestation. It also increased the capacity of existing community gardens and developed an additional community garden to enhance healthy, affordable food alternatives and common space for neighbors to interact safely. Three existing community-school gardens were revitalized and expanded and one new community garden space was added. See the project kick off media release here with links to more information on the Lincoln South of Downtown initiative.