Strategies for Postindustrial Success

Smaller legacy cities - older industrial communities with about 30,000 to 200,000 residents – are undergoing significant transformations as they adapt to twenty-first century economic realities.  Revitalizing America’s Smaller Legacy Cities, a report from Greater Ohio Policy Center and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, documents the unique challenges and opportunities facing these communities as they seek to revitalize and thrive.

The report uncovers eight strategies that smaller legacy cities have used to stabilize and grow. But knowing what needs to be done is only half the battle – none of these strategies are easy or straightforward to implement. This toolkit is intended to help bridge the gap between high-level strategies and on-the-ground tactics by compiling resources that can help guide practitioners in making change in their own communities.

Build Civic Capacity

Committed local leadership is crucial for shepherding smaller legacy cities through the process of revitalization.

Encourage A Shared Vision

The magnitude of the challenges facing smaller legacy cities means that no sector can successfully address them alone.

Expand Opportunities for Low-Income Workers

Efforts to revitalize smaller legacy cities cannot be successful if they focus on high income residents alone.

Build on an Authentic Sense of Place

Quality places help to attract and retain talent, an important component of economic development.

Focus Regional Efforts on a Strong Downtown

The strength of a region depends on the strength of its central city.

Engage in Community and Strategic Planning

In a small city where resources are scarce, competing visions for the future cannot all be implemented successfully.

Stabilize Distressed Neighborhoods

Strong cities require neighborhoods of choice for all residents.

Strategically Leverage State Policies

States have an important role to play in local revitalization efforts.

A Product of:

Greater Ohio Policy Center
Greater Ohio Policy Center

Columbus, OH

The Mission of the Greater Ohio Policy Center is to champion revitalization & sustainable growth in Ohio

Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
Lincoln Institute of Land Policy

Cambridge, MA

The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy seeks to improve quality of life through the effective use, taxation, and stewardship of land.