Mapping Our Community: Residential Segregation in Mt. Airy and in Philadelphia
The West Mt. Airy neighborhood of Philadelphia has been nationally recognized for its efforts to intentionally promote racial integration and neighborhood stability since the 1950s.1 In the more than 50 years since then, residents understand the challenges to integration through a new lens and remain passionate about creating a neighborhood of diversity and inclusion. A contemporary challenge to racial integration in Mt. Airy focuses on the concern that rising housing costs will lead to the displacement of current residents and will inhibit lower-income residents from moving into the ...
The Role of Transportation in Fostering Economic Mobility in Northeastern Pennsylvania
The Scranton Area Community Foundation (SACF), founded 63 years ago to promote change and growth in northeastern Pennsylvania, embarked on a series of community discussions more than a year ago to elicit information about the region?s opportunities for economic growth
Investing to Create Good Jobs
A growing number of foundation, nonprofit, and for-profit investors are making investments for measurable social and environmental impact as well as financial return. The ?impact investing? field includes a few investors that are investing in businesses specifically to create jobs for unemployed and underemployed residents. These investors also provide ongoing assistance to owners of the businesses to create ?good quality jobs,? which generally provide income above the minimum wage, health benefits, and training and opportunities for workers to move into positions with higher wages. Three ...
Spotlight on Research: Youth Debt and College Graduation
The rise in debt among youth to finance their higher education has engendered a great deal of discussion. Much of the attention has been focused on the angst that arises when the debt has to be repaid. This has been especially burdensome on students from lower-income households. While this is worthy of concern, another aspect of the educational-related debt that is being examined is whether the debt was worth it. More specifically, what is the association of the debt with the borrower?s graduation from college? Some investigations not only consider the relationship between educational loans ...
The Rise and Fall of Philadelphia's Commercial Corridors
In her classic The Death and Life of Great American Cities, published in 1961, Jane Jacobs argued that the "basic requisite" for maintaining safe cities was "a substantial quantity of stores and other public spaces sprinkled along the sidewalks of a district.... Stores, bars and restaurants, as the chief examples, work in several different and complex ways to abet sidewalk safety." In this article, the case of Philadelphia is used to explore the extent to which such neighborhood commercial corridors live up to their promise of maintaining public order and city civility, what factors ...
Revitalizing Commercial Corridors: Lessons from LISC MetroEdge
In many low- and moderate-income communities, existing retail strips are underutilized or a shadow of their former selves, with vacant storefronts and a limited range of goods. Coordinated efforts by community-based organizations, local business owners, and municipal partners can create conditions to revitalize these strips and to spur economic growth by upgrading the physical surroundings, supporting existing businesses, attracting new stores, and improving the reputation of the community as a place to shop. As businesses grow, they provide a wider array of retail options to residents, add ...
BankWork$ Gives Underemployed Residents Access to Entry-Level Banking Positions
Low-income residents facing employment barriers are obtaining entry-level job opportunities in the banking industry through a program launched 10 years ago in Los Angeles. The program, BankWork$, is undergoing a planned national replication.
CDCs: What Does Success Look Like?
Community development corporations (CDCs) understand that they have differing roles in differing contexts, depending on whether they are working with a high-vacancy, seriously depressed area where many residents and businesses do not want to stay; a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood; or a traditionally exclusionary suburb. The roles that CDCs play were explored in two sessions at the Reinventing Older Communities conference: The Future of CDCs: Three Compelling Visions and Measuring the Impact of CDCs.
Spotlight on Research: Down Payment Assistance Plays Critical Role in Affordable Homeownership
In the aftermath of the recent Great Recession, there has been a tightening in mortgage lending practices. This cautious atmosphere has been prompted in large part by the rash of foreclosures in the housing market that accompanied the financial crisis. One potential safeguard is the existence of a down payment requirement that must be met by prospective homebuyers as a condition of securing a mortgage. The rationale is that when individuals invest their own money in the form of a down payment, the potential homebuyers will be more motivated to maintain their mortgage obligations. For those ...
Equitable Transportation Tools and Publications
The following tools enable users to understand and analyze transportation trends and issues, with an emphasis on equity. The publications provide resources and strategies used in the equitable transportation field. All of these resources have been selected for their broad geographic scope or applicability