Continuing this week’s focus on the CoolTown Program…
OK, we’re committed to becoming a CoolTown. What are the next steps?
Phase I: Building the Human Community
The first phase is building the community of people that are not only going to lead the effort of becoming a CoolTown, but who will actually live, work and grow new businesses there. This CoolTown Market Creation program envisions a five-step process:
1. The CoolTown 100 – We’ll establish a collaborative of the most influential entrepreneurial creatives; the CoolTown 100 (example), a local and national group of visionary business, civic and academic leaders. The group will craft a clear vision focusing on enhancing local industry and cultural strengths through a new/revitalized community.
2. The CoolTown Guild – The CoolTown 100 leads a series of interactive market research focus groups to understand the amenities, price points and living/working conditions needed to attract a creative talent base to the new community. Those who then commit to living and working in the new community become The CoolTown Guild, a local workforce group focused on fulfilling a specific economic development and market vision.
3. Let’s Build It! Action Plan – In conjunction with existing privaet and institutional investment partners, the CoolTown Guild and 100 work together to prepare a concise road map that highlights the specific actions to build the CoolTown and its local economy: land control, development team, capital/financing plan, technology, culture and public policy.
4. The CoolTown Planning Charrette – The Guild represents the economic and residential market in a master-plan charrette (an intensive week-long exercise where the entire town is planned) hosted by the City and the development team, taking a direct role in planning their own community and economic future.
5. Keeping It Cool– The Guild stays on as the “business improvement group”, a self-financed local collaborative to ensure the right tenants, programs and services are in place to maintain the town as a creative destination.