Authentic Redevelopment uses twelve steps to transform neglected areas into beneficial community uses.
Through community outreach, a consultant or developer will create a brief, templated business plan of the project to determine how quickly any number of potential uses can become self-sustaining. ***In the case of brownfield properties, this may include an EPA Phase I assessment for the entire portfolio.***
The community works together to identify properties and opportunities for redevelopment that are not turning over on their own — but that have the potential to be put to excellent use.
Local stakeholders form a nonprofit or for-profit cooperative that is not only representative of the investors in the project, but of the people who will be occupying, neighboring, and using the new property as well.
The established cooperative acquires multiple nearby parcels well below market rates from the following sources.
1) Government-owned properties
2) Tax and bank foreclosure properties
3) Brownfield listings
4) Local realtors
5) And perhaps especially, legacy property owners who are holding an unlisted property, but are not sure what to do with it.
Authentic Redevelopment then merges these properties into one portfolio, giving redevelopment efforts economies of scale beyond their current capabilities as stand-alone properties.
Community members work with the cooperative to provide valuable input into how to make the project something neighbors can utilize and feel good about. This includes input about the mix of uses and how much of the space will be sold, leased, held by the cooperative, or opened to the public.
Even very poor-quality properties should be deliberately added to the portfolio, as the increase in value of the central buildings can be used to pay for demolition, greening, and the creation of commons spaces on parcels with no redevelopment value.
Local teams will be employed to breathe new life into old structures according to local tastes using building materials that are sustainable and affordable.
Community Land Trust Option
To keep rents and home ownership affordable in perpetuity, the cooperative may create a community land trust, continuing to own and manage the land while selling or renting the structures on the land.
Open the doors to the community according to the mission of the project!
Every property may contain opportunities for bettering one’s life skills, including personal finance, entrepreneurship, community development, technology, leadership, and even an apprenticeship for the renovation and greening of the property itself!
Commons spaces will be oriented toward supporting local interaction across diverse groups, bolstering craft-oriented entrepreneurship, producing food, greening the local environment, and enjoying arts and entertainment together.
The portfolio can and should be expanded, as long as the cooperative never competes with other local interests on land uses that are restoring on their own.