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April 2017
New Report Details Revitalization Efforts in Four Industrial Cities

CHICAGO- (April 4, 2017) – A new report describes the actions four U.S. industrial cities are taking to improve economic outcomes for their residents.

The report, “Looking for Progress in America’s Smaller Legacy Cities,” is based on study visits to Chattanooga, TN; Cedar Rapids, IA; Rochester, NY; and Grand Rapids, MI – all cities that appear to have experienced some revitalization since the sharp national decline in economic activity during the late 2000s.

The report is designed to help representatives of economic-development funding organizations that serve specific geographic areas, often referred to as “place-based funders.” These funders can play an important role in helping residents of growing cities experience economic opportunity.

“This report looks at what’s happening in these cities to inform and educate organizations that provide funding that is place-specific,” explained Jeremiah Boyle, Managing Director of Community and Economic Development at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, who helped develop the report with community development professionals from the Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta, Boston and New York. ”What we learned is that efforts to promote economic growth – for example, job creation or infrastructure development – must be inclusive of all residents in a community.”

In producing the report, the Reserve Banks collaborated with the Restoring Prosperity in Older Industrial Cities program at The Funders’ Network, a membership organization that helps grantmakers across North America advance strategies in order to create communities and regions that are more equitable, sustainable, prosperous and resilient.

"Our hope is that this report will help funders figure out how to better use limited resources to achieve robust, equitable and inclusive economic outcomes in their communities,” said Alicia Kitsuse, director of the Restoring Prosperity in Older Industrial Cities program at The Funders’ Network, which is headquartered in Coral Gables, Florida.

Link here to paper and executive summary.

Please contact Jere Boyle (Jeremiah.P.Boyle@chi.frb.org) or Susan Longworth(Susan.Longworth@chi.frb.org) with any questions.


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Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Background

The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks that, along with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., make up the nation’s central bank. The Chicago Reserve Bank serves the Seventh Federal Reserve District, which encompasses the northern portions of Illinois and Indiana, southern Wisconsin, the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, and the state of Iowa. In addition to participation in the formulation of monetary policy, each Reserve Bank supervises member banks and bank holding companies, provides financial services to depository institutions and the U.S. government, and monitors economic conditions in its District.

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