Community Progress Blog

Southwest Detroit Presents a Promising Model for the City’s Future

Written by on September 10, 2012

Cities are complex hives of human activity that highlight all that’s inspiring and troubling about modern life, often at the same time. New York’s revitalized districts sizzle with creative fervor yet other parts of town struggle with poverty and drugs. Chicago’s Lakefront exudes prosperity while pockets of the West and South sides look like they’ve…

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Thinking of the City as a Startup

Written by on September 10, 2012

What if you were to view your city as a startup? “The ingredients for a successful startup and a successful city are remarkably similar,” wrote Jon Bischke, a guest blogger on TechCrunch. “You need to build stuff that people want. You need to attract quality talent.” You have to have enough capital to make your…

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A Co-op for Community Development

Written by on September 10, 2012

It works much like a food co-op, but the Northeast Investment Cooperative (NEIC) deals with real estate. Through NEIC, community members pool their resources to collectively buy, rehab and manage commercial and residential property in Northeast Minneapolis, its website reads. The group is focused on transforming the area’s “stressed and poorly utilized residential and commercial…

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Rebuilding Kalamazoo with Strong Partnerships

Written by on September 10, 2012

Mary Balkema is the Kalamazoo County Treasurer and has been for six years. When I meet her one bright afternoon, she is wearing shorts and a T-shirt that reads, “inspector.” She’s not dressed up for work today because we’re going for a drive. This tour will showcase what she and partners like the Kalamazoo County Land Bank Authority (KCLBA)…

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Letter from the President

Written by on September 10, 2012

In July, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that it had approved buyers for nearly 2,500 vacant Fannie Mae properties.  Most of the winning bidders in this auction — the first of many needed to deal with the hundreds of thousands of vacant properties currently held in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s portfolios —…

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