Placemaking builds vibrant local communities
Placemaking is the process of creating unique spaces that capitalize on a community's assets to promote vibrancy, investment, and quality-of-life. Strengthening the connection between people and the places they inhabit, these community-based projects deepen residents' and visitors' connection to place and contribute to their health, happiness, and well-being.
Creating a sense of place increases the public value of shared spaces. Implementing placemaking strategies creates unique destinations that structure the image and identity of a community. When done well, these projects develop community pride and local investment, helping to increase community engagement and public participation. Though difficult to quantify, this sense of connection is an important contributor to a sustainable, thriving region.
ON TO 2050 will encourage and support local placemaking strategies
CMAP has contributed to placemaking efforts in the region through the framework of "livability." GO TO 2040 discusses the key role livability plays in creating healthy, safe, and walkable communities. Likewise, CMAP Local Technical Assistance (LTA) planning work promotes placemaking through recommendations that help realize GO TO 2040's livability goals. One example of an LTA project that promotes placemaking is the Arts and Culture Planning: A Toolkit for Communities.
ON TO 2050 will further encourage and support placemaking. The goal of the upcoming placemaking memo is to identify CMAP's work in promoting effective placemaking while providing general recommendations for these efforts that will complement certain areas, such as downtown districts, open spaces, and others. While ON TO 2050 takes a regional-scale approach, it recognizes the importance of local-scale details that create a sense of place and quality-of-life. The placemaking memo will identify strategies to augment those local-scale details with creative projects that maximize our shared spaces by showcasing architectural quality, historic preservation, streetscaping, public art, retail mix, and many others. In lieu of data-driven recommendations, this snapshot will highlight successful placemaking case studies from a variety of communities with different capacities.