Boston’s City Hall Plaza
This week in Social Impact Across the U.S.:
- Boston is crowdsourcing ideas from its well-educated residents on how to redevelop City Hall Plaza, the long-neglected center of civic life in the city. CityLab looks at the opportunity and limits of reaching outside government for ideas. Some promising ideas, including a design for a much greener plaza, have already been highlighted through the process.
- Next City examines a new trend in New Orleans: the return of the public market. These big, barn-like buildings once served as shopping centers and gathering places in neighborhoods across the city. Now they are being used to provide greater food access to a city ridden with food deserts.
- One in 12 Americans are “unbanked,” according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, meaning they do not have a savings or checking account. Vox highlights a practice, called saving circles, which facilitate saving and credit building by leveraging a small, tight-knit group to deposit money on a schedule and then receive a lump sum on a rotational basis.
- Newark is trying to off-load vacant land by offering 100 plots for $1000 each, New York Times reports. The program, or “homestead sale,” attracted investors from across city and region, including all five boroughs of New York City. One interesting requirement: the properties had to be bought by a pair of people, in effort to attract families and couples with a commitment to the city. The buyers are also required to develop the property within 18 months and then spend five years living there.
What do you think about what’s happening in Social Impact Across the U.S.? How could Philly learn from other cities and states? Please leave a comment to help us bring the national and local conversations together.
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