Placemaking is more than beautiful murals — it is an approach that actively stimulates and sustains downtown economic development.
In a recent article in the Economic Development Journal, Main Street America/MSA, discusses how to harness the power of placemaking in your downtown including exploring case studies of current placemaking efforts across the country and showcasing the latest in MSA’s entrepreneurial ecosystem work.
Main Street America/MSA defines Placemaking as a collaborative, community-led, comprehensive approach to the planning, design, and management of places, e.g. public spaces, commercial districts, streets, etc. They promote placemaking practice as a strategy to bolster traditional economic development methods.
Main Street America/MSA has been helping revitalize older and historic commercial districts for 40 years. Today, it is a network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, that share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development.
The Main Street Approach™ to community and economic development is centered around Transformation Strategies, which articulate focused, deliberate paths to strengthening downtowns or commercial districts’ economies. Transformation Strategies are implemented through comprehensive work in four broad areas, known as the Four Points:
One of NAR’s 2020 Strategic Priorities, a collaborative effort with a broad coalition of organizations, including multicultural real estate groups, lenders, and builders to amplify NAR’s advocacy voice and broaden housing opportunities for underserved communities, is to Drive Community Development.
As we begin 2020, I encourage you to read the article to see how the REALTOR® community can help build partnerships, work with civic leaders and community organizations, especially Main Street organizations, and take advantage of NAR’s Community Outreach grants and other resources to impact economic growth in their communities.