Community Progress Blog

Communities are Using Arts and Culture to Tackle Challenges Amid the Pandemic; and it’s Working (Press Release)

Written by on June 28, 2021

The Saving Power of Community Creativity highlights leaders’ response to COVID-19 and racial injustice through arts, culture, and creative placemaking, created to be a resource for others.  Washington, DC – June 29, 2021 – Today, the Center for Community Progress, America’s leading resource on issues of vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated (VAD) properties, shared The Saving Power of Community…


New Webinars Tackle COVID-19, Code Enforcement, Land Banking, and More

Written by on January 27, 2021

The combination of a new year, new leaders, and new challenges mean residents and local governments are positioned for rapid change in 2021. Register for this Spring’s Cornerstone Webinars to ensure you’re up to date on the latest trends and answers to this year’s historic challenges and opportunities.   February 2021 External Partner Webinars   Pivots…


Your Support Means [Community] Progress

Written by on May 5, 2020

#GivingTuesdayNow 6 Ways Your Support Helps Create Community Progress  For more than 10 years, the Center for Community Progress has helped America’s highest-need communities respond to the challenges of vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties. From addressing the unjust policies and impacts of America’s past to raising our voice in response to community needs today, our work helps neighborhoods…


Problem to Purpose: The Drug Activity Answer for One Lansing Neighborhood, Get Creative

Written by on April 21, 2020

Empty lots are open opportunities – for safety threats or community innovation. Pegasus Garden, located in the Prospect PLACE neighborhood in Lansing, Michigan, is a great example of what happens when communities choose option two. Jennifer Grau, a Prospect PLACE neighborhood resident, said the garden was created out of a need to find a use…


Problem to Purpose: Placemaking Brings Community Healing for Residents Impacted by Substance Abuse

Written by on April 14, 2020

Today’s opioid epidemic has become “the worst public health crisis in Pennsylvania,” according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. On average, 10 Pennsylvanians lose their lives to a substance abuse disorder each day. Hinge Collective principals, Alexa Bosse and Ari Miller, are working to find new ways to fight Philadelphia’s challenge through a creative placemaking solution…


Problem to Purpose: From Landlord Neglect to a Circus for Youth

Written by on March 24, 2020

Newburgh’s Creative Solutions to the Vacancy and Deterioration Challenge Kids flying through the air on isn’t uncommon in one community north of New York City. There, residents and leaders converted a vacant lot owned by a negligent landlord into what’s known today at the Zip Zap Circus — a circus for social change that works…


Problem to Purpose: Indiana Teens Recycle to Turnaround Vacant Lots

Written by on March 17, 2020

Tired-A-Lot Transforms Vacant Properties While Creating Youth Volunteerism Teaching teens to give back can yield more than positive values and great character; it can help change a neighborhood. Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and Northeastern University show there are positive connections between youth volunteerism, health, and academics. One hybrid group of local officials from the Zoning Land Use…


Problem to Purpose: Teens Create Deterioration Answers in Colorado Springs

Written by on March 3, 2020

A Camera and $500 Turn into a Deteriorated Property Solution “Eventually the youth started asking, ‘Why can’t we just make the changes?’” explained Mia Ramirez of The Colorado Trust. That one powerful question spurred a student group from the Leaders Engaged and Amazingly Determined (LEAD) in Colorado Springs, Colorado to improve a deteriorated property in…


Power of Placemaking – What Vacancy Victories from Massachusetts, New York, and California Taught Us

Written by on February 18, 2020

From increased fire outbreaks to elevated safety concerns, there’s no secret property vacancy can weigh down a community. But, how can communities lift themselves up? What are the keys to turning a vacant lot or building into an asset? The answers may vary for each community (and we’re here if you need help with your…


Problem to Purpose: From Gas Station to Food Station, Solving Insecurity through Creative Placemaking

Written by on February 18, 2020

According to a 2017 study, a whopping 48 percent of Detroit households are “food insecure.” This means that nearly 30,000 Detroit residents experience hurdles when trying to access to quality and affordable food options. How are residents tackling the challenge? One group, Hope Community (Cool Cities) Park, is tackling food insecurity through bringing options closer to…