Investing in Equitable Urban Park Systems: Emerging Funding Strategies and Tools. Urban Institute. Matthew Eldridge, Kimberly Burrowes, Patrick Spauster. July 16, 2019
Urban parks and green space provide significant tangible and
intangible benefits for cities and their residents. However, for residents and
communities to take full advantage of these benefits, parks must be accessible
and high quality. Historically, low-income neighborhoods and communities of
color have had faced barriers in accessing quality parks. To bridge these gaps
and achieve “park equity” (all residents having reasonably equal access to
quality parks), park leaders and their partners are increasingly focused on
directing park investments to communities in greatest need. Drawing from
interviews with park and recreation leaders and a scan of innovative practices
and approaches from across the country, this report highlights funding
strategies and models communities are implementing to place equity and
communities at the center of park investments and funding decisions. In
addition to elevating interesting, replicable examples, this report offers 11
takeaways for park leaders and their government and community partners. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 74 pages].
Catalyzing Neighborhood Revitalization through Strengthening Civic Infrastructure: Principles for Guiding Place-Based Initiatives. Urban Institute. Aaron Shroyer, Joseph Schilling, Erika C. Poethig. April 16, 2019
Place-based revitalization initiatives seek to make every
neighborhood safe and healthy and to connect them to high-quality services.
These initiatives share a few common characteristics. They concentrate
resources in a specific geography; combine physical revitalization with the
provision of services (e.g., health, education, and job training programs);
leverage existing institutions, networks, and capital; and engage local leaders
and residents. However, they have a mixed track record on whether and how much
current residents benefit from such redevelopment. To address these and other
limitations, more place-based initiatives are starting to marry physical
revitalization with intentional efforts to build civic infrastructure. Civic
infrastructure incorporates a broad view of community assets and therefore
seeks to improve physical and civic assets as well as the processes, practices,
and interactions those assets enable. By strengthening civic infrastructure,
revitalizing physical assets can help create equitable outcomes for residents
and increase community benefits. [Note: contains copyrighted
[PDF format, 42 pages].
Public Housing Work Requirements: Case Study on the Chicago Housing Authority. Urban Institute. Diane K. Levy et al. April 16, 2019
This report presents a case study of the Chicago Housing
Authority’s (CHA’s) work requirement policy, one of a small number of work
requirements implemented by housing authorities. The report describes the CHA
work requirement, the policy’s implementation and how it has changed, and
perceptions of implementation and outcomes from key CHA and service provider
staff and residents. The CHA work requirement has been in place for nearly 10
years, allowing us to analyze implementation over time and outcomes. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 37 pages].
Innovative Financing Approaches for Affordable Rental Housing in the Chicago Region. Urban Institute. Kathryn Reynolds, Leiha Edmonds, Erika C. Poethig. February 28, 2019
Solving America’s affordable housing crisis will mean increasing production of housing, protecting residents from eviction and foreclosure, and preventing the loss of current affordable housing stock. For households unable to obtain housing benefits, unsubsidized “naturally occurring” rental housing provides the bulk of affordable housing in many markets. In the fall of 2018 Urban Institute conducted a series of interviews with staff from Community Investment Corporation (CIC), a community development financial institution (CDFI) in Chicago, the City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development and non-profit firm, Elevate Energy. Based on these interviews, we present several strategies to preserve unsubsidized housing stock that are present as aspects in the CIC programs studied. These are proactive program development, responsiveness to local conditions, pursuit and leveraging of partnerships, and strategic use of federal, state, and local policy levers. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 38 pages].
Partners or Pirates? Collaboration and Competition in Local Economic Development. Urban Institute. Megan Randall et al. December 20, 2018
In this report, the authors explore how and why local governments have turned to cooperation to boost economic development. They synthesize highlights from the literature, explore program features from two regional case studies, and share findings from interviews with local practitioners. Although research on the effectiveness of current practices is limited, they identify themes that can inform cooperative economic development. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 67 pages].
Building beyond Policing: A Case Study of Eden Night Live in Alameda County, California. Urban Institute. Cameron Okeke. September 25, 2018
Key takeaway: How community parties have helped California sheriffs rethink public safety
This report describes how the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office used Eden Night Live, a community festival and pop-up marketplace, to creatively reimagine and rebuild community-police relations in Ashland/Cherryland. Through interviews with officers, community members, and staff, this case study examines how artistic performance, community participation, and community-based economic development can build local commerce, foster community cohesion, and change perceptions of public safety. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 42 pages].
Empowering Young People to Make Their Place: A Case Study of the Marcus Garvey Clubhouse in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Urban Institute. Mark Treskon, Sino Esthappan. September 25, 2018
Key takeaway: Collaborative youth clubhouse changes perceptions of community safety
This report describes how the Marcus Garvey Clubhouse uses arts and culture to revitalize and reimagine community safety in a high crime, low income neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY. Drawing on interviews and focus groups with program participants, program staff, and funders, this case study finds that actively engaging with the needs of youth and empowering them to design and program a community space can foster economic opportunities and enhance perceptions of neighborhood safety. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
[PDF format, 32 pages].