Auburn initiative sticks with ‘placemaking’ building block

July 21st, 2016

By Mariah Miller | Indiana Economic Digest 

AUBURN —The Hometown Collaboration Initiative Committee (HCI) held a consensus vote Tuesday to stick with placemaking as its building block.

Auburn is one of four communities in Indiana selected to participate in the Hometown Collaboration Initiative for 2016. The committee will create a business plan and decide on a capstone project funded by the state with a grant up to $50,000. The capstone project must reflect one of the three Hometown Collaboration Initiative pillars: economy, leadership or placemaking.

At its June 6 meeting, the group chose placemaking as the pillar for developing a capstone project. However, in the days following the meeting, the group was left feeling “unsettled” with the decision, members said. HCI facilitators agreed to present the introductory sessions for both placemaking and leadership.

After hearing the presentations Tuesday, group members participated in a question-and-answer session led by HCI facilitators. Each committee member gave his or her opinion on which building block Auburn should choose moving forward.

At the conclusion of the meeting, a vote found a consensus in favor of picking placemaking.

The program tracks available for placemaking as a way of “investing in your place” include: enhancing the value of public spaces, enriching place through community design, embracing the power of travel (tourism) and rebuilding the local foods system.

The next meeting will be a “transition meeting” moving from the foundation phase to the building block phase of the HCI process. The HCI team will consider where the community has been to date and review where they’re headed next. The team will share expectations, including time commitments, for the placemaking building block and consider other community members who should be involved with the placemaking building block.

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