A Broader Vision of Quality of Life as Economic Development Policy

Over the last couple of decades, community economic development practitioners and researchers have explored the importance of quality of life on economic activity and population growth. Dr. Amanda Weinstein discusses her work on the importance of quality of life for Midwestern communities and shares what this might mean for a broader set of economic development policy recommendations.

Design Wisconsin: Hustisford Design Team

On May 12, 2022, a group of 20 planning and design professionals found their way to Hustisford (17 in person, and 3 remotely) to dedicate their time and expertise in hopes of helping the community discover a shared vision for the future. The purpose of this document is to provide details as to the purpose, process, and outputs of the Design Hustisford program.

Design Wisconsin: La Valle Design Team

In response to severe flood events, the Village of La Valle, Wisconsin has been awarded federal funding to assist in flood mitigation and recovery. As part of the planning process, a group of local residents formed the La Valle Revitalization Committee. The purpose of the committee is to provide leadership and community representation.

Marketing, Image, and Branding

March 2022 — This section of the toolbox uses market information gathered in Part I, “Understanding the Market,” to learn about your downtown’s key consumer groups and how to reach and serve them better. This includes understanding their perceptions of downtown as a place to live, work, shop and play. With knowledge of these consumer […]

Arts & Entertainment

Art and Entertainment events can draw people downtown and increase economic activity in a variety of business categories. These events can attract people downtown who normally would not visit.

Community Vitality + Placemaking Fact Sheet: Imageability Mapping

Community Vitality + Placemaking Fact Sheet Imageability Mapping Overview September 2021 — MIT Professor and author Kevin Lynch developed imageability mapping in order to describe the unique relationships of urban elements within a given city. The University of Wisconsin-Madison, Division of Extension has adapted his approach to help communities better understand themselves. Using a group […]

Community Vitality + Placemaking Fact Sheet: Park(ing) Day

Community Vitality + Placemaking Fact Sheet Park(ing) Day Overview September 2021 — Park(ing) Day is an annual celebration of downtowns traditionally held on September 17. The original purpose of the celebration was to raise awareness of the amount of space dedicated to automobiles by temporarily reimagining individual parking spaces as parks, playgrounds, outdoor dining, and […]

4th Wave of Economic Development

Summary May 2021 — Industry recruitment. Small business support. Public-private partnerships. These strategies characterize waves of economic development in the United States. Are we in the 4th wave of economic development? If so, what does this mean for economic development practitioners? Steve Deller, professor in agricultural and applied economics and community economic development specialist, discusses […]

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