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A Bi-Weekly Newsletter 
 
Things move pretty fast nowadays. With a bustling network of hundreds of volunteers, so much amazing work happens every day, and we realized that we need to make you aware of it more often than every other month. So, we will be sending out shorter, but more frequent newsletters to your inbox to help you stay updated and engaged. 
 
Upcoming Events


 
Next Up: In-Depth Lease Review Tuesday March 23rd @ 6:30pm via Zoom. Register Here.

These free, monthly trainings are funded by a HUD Community Development Block Grant via the St. Louis Community Development Administration and coordinated by Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC, North Newstead Association, and the Vacancy Collaborative. 

 
Event Series Lasts through March 31st. Register Here

This series seeks to explore strategies and identify specific actions to address community priorities and goals related to preventing displacement while supporting reinvestment in the West End.

The outcome will be community-driven equitable development strategies with proposed actions, contact information for potential partners, anticipated tasks and phasing, and priorities for funding for each of the community goals.   
 
 
 
The St. Louis Association of Community Organizations is hosting a Youth-Centric Mayoral Forum on March 29 at 7:30pm. You can watch at https://www.facebook.com/314SLACO  

 
The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) today launched the Fair Lending Report, an interactive tool that allows users to produce a report on mortgages, small business lending and bank branch networks for any city, county or metro area in the nation.The report is designed to help local and national leaders gather insights about lending and bank networks, detect patterns of disinvestment and compare the performance of lenders in any community. 

NCRC will host a free webinar to demonstrate the new tool and answer questions on Tuesday, March 16 at 12 PM ET. The new tool will be available to the general public for a month, then become an exclusive service for NCRC members.

 
Center for Community Progress is hosting a webinar called: "Black Middle Neighborhoods: Reversing the Downward Trajectory in Legacy Cities" on March 17th at 12:00pm ET. Register Here

 Vacancy Collaborative Recurring Events 
 
The Vacancy Reading Group has continued meeting during COVID via zoom. All are welcome! Contact: dana.malkus@slu.edu for more information.




 
Working Group Meetings 
Anti Displacement: Meets on the Fourth Thursday of the Month at 5:30pm. Contact: stldisplacementwg@gmail.com for more information. 
Data Analysis: Next Meeting TBD. Contact: tara@communitybuildersstl.org for more information. 
Marketing and Engagement: Meets on the First Thursday of the Month at 12:00pm. Contact: dana.malkus@slu.edu for more information. 
Reinvestment and Reuse: Meets on the First Tuesday of the Month at 10:00am. Contact: naimgry@yahoo.com for more information. 
Stabilization, Maintenance, and Demolition: Meets on the Fourth Wednesday of the Month at 11:00am. Contact: ginnl@stlouis-mo.gov for more information. 
Vacancy Prevention: Meets every other Third Thursday of the Month at 4:00pm. Contact pjhoffman@lsem.org for more information. 
Food For Thought
Seattle program to track vacant buildings: an effort to bolster neighborhood safety
 In 2019, Seattle rolled out a revamped program to catalog and track sites that were generating multiple nuisance complaints. The effort, known as the Vacant Building Monitoring Program, also broadened its scope to include properties before they became problems, which made it more proactive.The watch list of vacant buildings now extends into every corner of Seattle. 
Photo From: KOMO News 

We share news from other cities on vacancy related programs and policies, but they do not necessarily represent the views of our coalition members
Working Group Spotlight
Reinvestment and Reuse 
 
  
 The Reinvestment and Reuse Working Group identifies and promotes financial and sustainable solutions to equitably reinvest in vacant property. Topics include alternative land use through greening, small contractor/rehabber development, and financial reinvestment tools.  

Currently, the working group is focusing on completing the Vacant Lot Toolkit, a resource for neighborhood groups to conduct urban greening projects on vacant lots. Arbolope Studio, a graphic design agency in St. Louis City, is working with the group to enhance the current draft version of the Toolkit. The final product will be a user friendly guide of different land uses with graphics that will bring the possibilities of urban greening to light! 




Additionally, the working group is partnering with Saint Louis University's Urban Planning Department for two different projects. Dr. Sarah Coffin's class is exploring innovative financing methods for hard to fund rehab projects in high vacancy neighborhoods, and Bob Lewis' class is researching manufactured housing as a tool for redevelopment. Both classes will be sharing their findings at the end of the semester.
Give STL Day is on May 6th.  
You are receiving this newsletter because you subscribed, attended a working group meeting, or another Vacancy Collaborative event.

What is the St. Louis Vacancy Collaborative?
The St. Louis Vacancy Collaborative (VC) is a coalition of community members, private and non-profit stakeholders, and City agencies committed to reducing vacant property in St. Louis. The VC helps to coordinate existing vacancy efforts under one umbrella and empowers the public and private sectors to work together toward solutions. We convene committees and working groups to facilitate systemic change, advance new policies, share success stories, and support neighborhood-centric solutions. Head to www.stlvacancy.com for more information.

Support
Funding to support coordination of the St. Louis Vacancy Collaborative was provided, in part, by Missouri Foundation for Health, the Missouri Department of Conservation, and the Community Builders Network of Metro St. Louis. 
 
You can make a donation now if you are so inclined :)
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