Economic Development

Economic activity is a crucial part of a healthy community, whether it’s access to quality jobs for residents, business support, or a functioning, diverse range of retail options.

We Should Be Working Less

Changing our assumptions about what constitutes "normal" full time work could help address all sorts of social problems, from unemployment to civic disengagement.

Manufactured Locally

While there is much debate about the state of large-scale domestic manufacturing, a few places are quietly supporting local manufacturing for items that have been made overseas for some time, from jewelry to jeans.

CRA Modernization:  A Critical Moment for Underserved Neighborhoods

The Community Reinvestment Act and the Consumer Financial Protection Agency Act hold great promise for the creation of a more financially inclusive nation, but both depend on critical "moments in time" in Congress that will determine whether they become good laws or are weakened beyond recognition

The Governor’s Budget Non-strategy

It wouldn’t be surprising to see non-Californians still do a double-take when the title “Governor” is applied to former on-screen cyborg Arnold Schwarzenegger. It was...
interior view of a greenhouse with rows of plants

Outside Investment or Self-Reliance for Rural Success?

Recently I came across a couple articles that questioned the economic viability of rural areas in large parts of...

Less Pasture, More Concrete in Rural Future?

“From concrete to pasture.” That's how one might characterize my relocation a couple years ago from Boston to Central Virginia. Boston is a place where...

Connecting CDFIs and Impact Investors

It should be a natural fit; what’s in the way?
Warehouse-style buildings.

For Cities, Industrial Land Matters

In a recent blog post, Tarry Hum, a professor of urban studies at Queens College, profiled the failure of the De Blasio administration to...

The Dollar Stores Take Their Place on the Block

When I lived in the big city, there was a Family Dollar among the various retail, cafe, bar and restaurant establishments on the nearby...

Parks For Revitalization

The image in this post, which photographer Bill Lim has made available to us through the wonder of the Creative Commons, is of the...

Sprawl vs. Unions

The three very different stories of the building trades in Atlanta, Denver, and Portland, Ore., show just how much urban development patterns affect workers.
johns hopkins medical library

In Baltimore, Johns Hopkins Seeks to Be a Good Neighbor

The current HopkinsLocal effort, a three-year program launched in September 2015, is also clearly a response to the death of Freddie Gray and the events that followed.
A panel discussion about Opportunity Zones in Chicago.

Who Will Benefit From Opportunity Zones? It’s Still Unclear

Who will benefit most from these investments remains the biggest question.

Filling Commercial Vacancies with Food Pantries

When I tell people that food pantries can be a new and innovative way to help lift up communities, they look at me as...

Operation Neighborhood Recovery and the Future of Community Development

Urban Essex County, New Jersey, one of the hardest hit areas in the state by the ongoing foreclosure crisis, could be the laboratory for an ostensible reinvention of community development, as a local CDC there announced today the successful acquisition of 47 mortgages on troubled properties with an eye toward stabilizing neighborhoods in some of the oldest suburban communities in New Jersey.

Infrastructure Woes or Opportunities?

Anyone who has wasted hours each day commuting to work, sat in traffic for an hour as a freight train inched by, waited endlessly...

Crackdown Rocks Real-Estate Industry

The Federal Bureau of Investigation announced today that the Justice Department has indicted more than 400 defendants in 144 mortgage fraud cases. The indictments,...
A worker at Evergreen Cooperative Laundry, which recently secured new contracts for 3 million pounds of health care linens.

Green Jobs with Roots

For the founders of Cleveland's Evergreen Coops, putting a handful of people to work at minimum wage isn't worth it. They are aiming at nothing less than a ground-up economic transformation -- one owned by the very people it's intended to help.

Do New Yorkers Need an Emerald City?

The Christian Science Monitor reported a few days ago on the Bloomberg administration’s plans to redevelop the Willets Point industrial area of Queens (just...

Lifting the Fog on Section 3

When it's more appealing to circumvent the law requiring that jobs in public housing construction go to qualified residents than to follow it, something needs to change.