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Saint Louis Community Builders Exchange

March 30, 2016


Great Neighborhoods Are Needed to Attract Millennial Workers: Cortex and NGA Belong Together

By Dennis Lower, President and CEO of Cortex

The Cortex Innovation Community is a 200-acre urban innovation district that is a 10-minute drive from the proposed location for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in St. Louis. Cortex is a very strong reason why NGA should choose the St. Louis site.

Cortex is a growing mixed-used technology hub that today supports more than 200 companies in bioscience, IT and engineering sectors, providing nearly 4,000 district jobs toward our goal of 13,000 tech-related jobs and 300 companies in the decade ahead.

As NGA evaluates its alternatives, the choice is not just about today, but how well its new location will attract the brightest and best talent for decades to come.

To read more of this op-ed, click here.

We invite readers to contribute to the civic conversation about community development in St. Louis by writing an op-ed for the Community Builders Exchange. Op-eds should be short (400-700 words) and provocative. If you have an idea for an op-ed, contact Todd Swanstrom at
The Fourth Annual CBN Awards Reception
The 4th Annual Community Builders Network Awards Reception is taking place tomorrow, March 31, at T-Rex! Tomorrow's awards reception recognizes individuals, organizations, companies, and institutions that help make St. Louis a better place to live. Please join us for an evening of food, networking, and fun as we award those making a positive impact on St. Louis neighborhoods. To see this year's award winners, click here. For more information and to RSVP for the event, click here.

What Happened to Federal Funding for Community Development
This NextCity article describes a challenging funding situation that community development corporations have faced in recent years. The article focuses on St. Louis and the state of Missouri, where CDBG funding has fallen by $39 million annually since 2010. The article also highlights the formation of CBN member, Tower Grove Neighborhoods CDC, who has positioned itself to be more competitive when applying for funding. To read the article from NextCity, click here.

Cantwell to to Launch National Campaign to Increase Federal Resources for Affordable Housing and Homelessness
Last week, the office of US Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington shared a press release on her effort to increase funding for affordable housing and resources for the homeless. The effort includes a plan for a 50% expansion of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit. To read more on this effort, click here.

Brick + Mortar DeSales March Newsletter
The Brick + Mortar March newsletter includes several positive stories taking place in the DeSales Community Housing footprint including approved funding for crime cameras cameras and a new sidewalk in front of the KIPP School on Ohio Ave. The newsletter also announces the hiring of a new Community Health Worker and provides some history on the development of the DeSales Community Garden. To read the full newsletter, click here.

RedDough Money Center in Pagedale Now Open
Earlier this month RedDough Money Center launched for the very first time in Pagedale. In partnership with Beyond Housing, RedDough will combat payday lenders and provide free financial education for the community. To learn more about RedDough, click here.

Professors, experts examine the impacts of gentrification in St. Louis in panel
Washington University hosted a panel discussion on gentrification in St. Louis last week. Panelists included Hank Webber and Molly Metzger of Washington University, Chris Krehmeyer of Beyond Housing, Bobbie Sykes of Voice of Women St. Louis. To read some of the main points discussed during the event, click here.



Forum on April Ballot Issue for the City of St. Louis
This forum is scheduled to take place tonight from 6:30pm to 8pm at the Central Library in Downtown St. Louis. The forum will feature a panel discussion on the five propositions included on April 5th's ballot. For questions, contact John Wagner at 314-299-6734. For more information, click here.

Eastern Missouri Nonprofit Conference
On April 1, Nonprofit Missouri (NPMO) is hosting this one-day conference in Downtown St. Louis. This conference will feature several sessions on various topics including a session lead by Dr. Jason Purnell on the For the Sake of All project. For more information about this event, click here.

Investing in Emotional Well-Being: A Community Action Forum
For the Sake of All is hosting a two part forum on the emotional health of communities on the 4th and 7th of April. Online registration is required for the forum on the 4th only. This event will take place at the St. Louis Science Center. For more information and to register, click here.

What's Brewing? Vandeventer Neighborhood
On April 7, the What's Brewing? series continues with a focus on the Vandeventer Neighborhood. Join Creating Whole Communities from 7:30 to 9am for breakfast and a discussion exploring this emerging neighborhood. For more information, click here.

15th Annual Youth Violence Prevention Conference
On Thursday, April 7, the University of Missouri-St. Louis will host this one-day conference youth violence and youth violence prevention at the J.C. Penney Conference Center. This event will feature several prominent speakers from across the country. For more information, about this event, click here.

Reasonable Accommodations for Housing Professionals and Open Door Awards Dinner
On April 8, the Metropolitan St. Louis Equal Housing and Opportunity Council (EHOCSTL) is hosting this training event for housing providers to learn about the Fair Housing Act. Following the training, EHOCSTL invites attendees to join them for their Open Door Awards Dinner. For more information on these events, click here.

Achieving a Sustainable Energy Future
On April 13 and 14 the Saint Louis University Center for Global Citizenship will host this conference on sustainability, energy, innovation and policy. For more information about this event, click here.

2016 Grace Hill Solutions Breakfast
On May 4th, Grace Hill will host its annual Solutions Breakfast at the Missouri History Museum. This event will focus on the connection between neighborhoods and health. For more information and to register, click here.



Small Business Workshop
CBN and its partners are hosting this workshop for individuals interested in entrepreneurship in St. Louis City or County.  The workshop will include information on best practices and on mitigating legal risks. This event is on April 5. For more information and to register, click here.



March 31
2016 Community Builders Network Awards Reception

April 19
Save the Date: St. Louis CREA's 10th Annual Fair Housing Month Kick-Off Celebration


The Community Builders Exchange would like to highlight a map relevant to community development in each issue. Please let us know if you have a map that would be of interest to our readers.

This week, we are sharing maps the characteristics of communities where millennials live. To view this week's map, click here. To view maps from previous editions of the Community Builders Exchange, click here


The St. Louis Community Builders Exchange is put out by the Community Builders Network of Metro St. Louis, with the support of the Des Lee Collaborative Vision at UMSL, to bring you quality up-to-date community development information, analysis, and opinion.

Affordable Housing Program Pre-Application
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines is offering funding up to $500,000 through its Competitive Affordable Housing Program (AHP). The pre-application period for this grant runs until March 31. The regular application period for funding opens on May 16 and will close on June 30. For more information about this grant, click here.

Women on Mission Saint Louis Grant
Women on Mission Saint Louis is currently accepting applications for two grants to be awarded for $42,500 each. Grants will be awarded to nonprofit organizations serving the College Hill community. The deadline to submit a grant application is March 31. For more information, click here.

Route 66 Grants
The National Parks Service Department of Interior is offering this grant for groups dedicated to the preservation of historic U.S. Highway 66. Awards from this grant range from $30,000 to $5,000. The deadline to apply is April 1. For more information, click here.

CDFI Program
The CDFI Program is an opportunity for financial assistance and technical assistance for CDFIs and certifiable CDFIs. The deadline to apply for this program is April 18. For more information, click here.

10,000 Small Businesses Program
Goldman Sachs is accepting applications for this program for small businesses. Through this program small businesses can learn management practices, receive support services and access to funding. The deadline to apply for this program ends on April 20. For more information, click here.

Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines Home$tart Program
The FHLB of Des Moines opened its Home$tart and Home$tart Plus program on February 1. FHLB Des Moines bank members will have the opportunity to reserve up to $100,000 per program in 2016 to promote homeownership in the community. Members can receive up to $5,000 per eligible household through Home$tart or $10,000 per eligible household through Home$tart Plus to assist owner-occupant homebuyers with down payment and closing cost assistance. Nonprofit organizations can work with banks to serve residents through this program. For more information, click here

Sam's Club Community Grant Program
The Walmart Foundation's Community Grant Program is accepting applications for grants ranging $250 to $2,500. Applicants should operate within the service area of a Walmart, Sam's Club or other Walmart facility. Applications will be accepted through December 31. For more information, click here.
Community Development Coordinator
Northside Community Housing, Inc. is seeking a Community Development Coordinator to help manage its "Make it Home" program, leasing and support services, and other responsibilities. For more information about this position, click here.

CBN Community Development Specialist
The Community Builders Network is seeking a Community Development Specialist. The deadline to apply for this position ends on April 13. For the full job description, click here (opens a PDF)

Planning Specialist
St. Louis County's Office of Strategy + Innovation is seeking a senior level Planning Specialist to research, develop and manage planning and public policy projects. To apply for this position, click here.

Positions Available at East-West Gateway
East-West Gateway Council of Governments is currently accepting applications for three positions, a Community Engagement Coordinator, a Policy Analyst Planner, and a Sustainability Planner. To read more about these positions and to apply, click here.

Des Lee Community Builders Graduate Research Assistant
The Community Builders Network is seeking a Graduate Research Assistant to assist with neighborhood research, CBN social media accounts, and the editing of the Community Builders Exchange e-newsletter. This position is open for current or incoming UMSL students only. For more information, click here.
Moved to Opportunity: The Long-Run Effect of Public Housing Demolition on Labor Market Outcomes of Children
New research on long-term neighborhood effects on children was recently highlighted in the New York Times blog, the Upshot. The new research compares the long-term effects from the Moving to Opportunity experiment of the 1990's with the effects from demolitions of public housing projects during the same time period. The comparison is made because the author, Eric Chyn, suspected selection bias played a role in the results from Moving to Opportunity. Instead, he uses data surrounding the demolition of public housing projects as all tenants would be required to move. Chyn's research finds that children who left public housing projects earned 16% more annually than children who remained in public housing projects. To read the summary article from the Upshot, click here.

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