Change in the City of Jeannette was propelled by highly engaged citizens and officials who were sick of watching their post-industrial community languish. Through a seven-day workshop process that brought together citizens, officials and policy experts, our firm helped the community to identify problems and begin to devise solutions.
After the workshop, it was clear that the city had to reconstitute a Planning Commission to lead the effort. Therefore, the first implementation steps were to help the city form the commission and provide training for the seven new members. Once established, the commission then oversaw an initiative to revise the city’s zoning which we helped to write in order to promote economic development and fight blight.
Next, we helped the commission gain a better understanding of a Blight Task Force by connecting them with another community to use as a model. After creating the task force to tackle that issue, renderings we created led to a grant that focused on improving gateways into the city.
Finally, in order to shed negative impressions, we helped the city rebrand itself by designing a new logo, slogan, and guiding principles. All this was accomplished before the plan was formally adopted by City Council. The next steps are ready for implementation, all set forth clearly in the “Retooling Jeannette” report.