These educational webinars will give participants an overview of the fundamentals of downtown revitalization and walk participants through the steps required to renew and restore their downtowns. The intended audience is municipalities that want to engage in revitalization efforts. This includes those that are ready to apply for the current round of NY Forward or DRI as well as those that are just getting started and want to build capacity at the local level in order to better position themselves for future DRI/NY Forward rounds and other funding opportunities.
- July 28: Introduction/Community Inventory (recording available)
- August 11: Visioning, Goal Setting, & Outreach (recording available)
- August 18: Community Needs Assessment
- August 23: Placemaking Strategies and Early Project Identification
- August 25: Project Development
- September 8: Implementation of a Revitalization Plan
The introductory webinar will present the fundamentals of community revitalization and provide participants with tools for evaluating their readiness for undertaking transformative changes in the public realm, built environment, economic base, and residential sphere. Participants will learn how to inventory their community's core assets and prevailing challenges in order to determine their administrative readiness for advancing long-term revitalization initiatives. The content of future webinars in the series will also be summarized.
Visioning, Goal Setting, & Outreach
This webinar will outline a step-by-step process for actively engaging local residents in participatory and interactive visioning exercises aimed at establishing long-term community goals. Attendees will learn how to leverage existing community networks and maximize participation through in-person events, virtual meetings, and online surveys.
Community Needs Assessment
Many small communities lack a dedicated planner with the range of technical skills in quantitative and spatial analysis that are typically required for community needs assessments. This module will guide participants through “short-cuts” in the technical assessment process and demonstrate easy-to-use online tools in statistical analysis, mapping, and real estate market research so that users can create a robust data driven profile of a community’s core assets and most salient challenges.
Placemaking Strategies and Early Project Identification
The webinar will show participants how to take the “data” from the visioning process and combine it with the findings from the community needs assessment to begin formulating a coherent placemaking strategy and generate development interest. We will show communities how to harness their fullest economic potential and build momentum regardless of their small population sizes, geographic distance from major employment hubs, or absence of transportation connections.
The webinar will help participants understand how to transform their early placemaking concepts into a synergistic set of transformative projects. Key issues addressed will be defining a project’s purpose and goals; relating the project goals to the community needs assessment; preparing conceptual designs; and developing a feasible project implementation plan.
Implementation of a Revitalization Plan
This webinar will focus on strategies for implementing a revitalization plan and avoiding project delays or cancellations. Key topics included in this webinar will be organizing implementation partners; amending the comprehensive plan and zoning code; shepherding a project through approval processes; and leveraging project successes for further revitalization initiatives.