SEB’s neighborhood revitalization experience includes: project-specific programs and citywide plans and strategies; design and implementation funding mechanisms; and extensive work with community-based development organizations. Examples of our work include citywide strategies and neighborhood-specific implementation plans in Des Moines, IA; New Haven, CT; and Peoria, IL. In Des Moines and New Haven, the proposals were accepted and converted into policy and program designs that remain in place today. In Peoria, the future plans for three large family public housing developments were at the very center of the work to define a citywide revitalization strategy.
Some of SEB’s representative neighborhood revitalization projects are:
- Des Moines, Iowa
In response of local housing problems not uncommon to many cities, the City of Des Moines and Polk County jointly selected SEB to analyze past patterns and methods of housing assistance and neighborhood planning in order to make recommendations to new policies and initiatives. SEB’s report proposed a designated neighborhood revitalization effort which coordinated neighborhood-based planning with targeted services and financial support from the City and County, including capital improvement programming. Included in the report was the proposal for a new Neighborhood Finance Corporation which was created and subsequently won a national award by the Mortgage Bankers Association of America. As of December 2003, the NFC has closed loans and grants is excess of $122 million in support of the neighborhood revitalization strategy and plan put forth by SEB. Moreover, 19 neighborhoods have now created and had plans approved so that they could be designated for targeted funding based on those plans.
- New Haven I – New Haven, Connecticut
The City of New Haven created a Housing Task Force that retained SEB to address concerns about the decline of the City’s housing stock as well as the City’s public and private housing delivery system. SEB’s final report led to the reorganization of city government which resulted in the creation of a Department of Housing and Neighborhood Development. This department combined widely scattered functions into a single department and produce a coordinated approach to neighborhood and housing-based issues. A variety of new programs and initiatives were also created as a result of the SEB report.