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1800 M Street Northwest
Washington, DC, 20036
United States

(202) 643-3850

Elements of a Strong City

Through our experience, research and expertise, these are some of the ideas and approaches that make a city a healthy, happy place to build community.

  • Attracting and keeping businesses - Cities and states with a diversity of businesses are more resilient to economic changes. Placing restrictions on the ability of individuals to protect their health or the ones that they love sends the message that Michigan is not interested in its own recovery, its citizens welfare or in the next generation, who have proven to be more open, diverse and accepting of social change. Placing restrictions on the types of businesses that may open in Michigan also sends the message that Michigan is not open for business, nor does creating barriers for new innovative business models to thrive. These types of restrictions make it more difficult for Michigan to gain back the population that it has lost, and make it difficult for Michigan to become more resilient.

  • Fiscal Responsibility - Cities who manage their finances succeed and thrive. We hope Detroit will develop a strong record of fiscal responsibility. 

  • Environmental Justice - Cities who engage and embrace communities of all backgrounds end up with richer dialogues and stronger connections to one another. We hope that City representatives will consider the impacts of placing utilities or public works projects near disadvantaged communities, and how to engage the entire community in constructive solutions. 

  • Governance - Cities with accountable, responsible City Councils and Executives succeed. We help to elect leaders who will understand the value of responsible governance. 

  • Zoning - Zoning laws determine where a building can be sited, how tall it can stand, how wide the roads can be and what can be done on the exterior of the property.  Through zoning laws, it is determined whether or not a property can be used for residential use or commercial use, farming or alternative energy, public safety, health or education and more. The people on the planning commission and the zoning commission are some of the most powerful and influential in a city's ability to thrive.

  • Green buildings - Green buildings are designed with the health and wellness of the building residents in mind. If designed right, they will save energy, water and lower impact on the planet. If operated appropriately, these designs can be maximized and the building owners will see significant savings and the building residents will be happier and healthier, with lower sick days.

  • Schools - Schools are the foundation of a community. It is important that quality schools with quality teachers are available to attract families into a neighborhood.


Top Issues:

  • Safety
  • Education
  • Public Transportation
  • Diversifying Businesses

 Read more, here.