Community Development

Staff:  susan Westa

Guided by its Community Development Committee, WRC works to help its member towns and the overall region on housing, community resources and economic development issues and projects.  WRC’s brownfields work is guided by the community development needs of the region.  

Recent efforts include helping towns in the region with planning for broadband fiber development and village center and downtown planning and revitalization.  WRC also actively participates in the Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategy (SEVEDS).


2021 Housing Webinar Series Wraps Up

The first webinar in our new Housing Series took place on October 27th. This webinar was presented by Peter Paggi and Elizabeth Bridgewater from Windham Windsor Housing Trust. The presenters explained why there is a need for affordable housing in the region and looked at strategies towns’ can pursue to set the stage for new housing development and to rehab existing homes to meet the needs of today’s families. A link to a recording of the webinar is provided here, How to Address Housing Needs in Your Town. A link to the slides is included here.

The second webinar was presented by WRC’s Executive Director, Chris Campany on November 10th. Chris explored the important role that water and wastewater infrastructure play in a community’s ability to attract housing to our village centers. A link to the webinar recording is here, Village Center Housing and Infrastructure. A link to the slides is included here.

The final webinar was presented by Susan Westa, WRC’s Community Development Lead and Jason Rasmussen, Director of Planning at the Mt. Ascutney Regional Commission on December 1st. The speakers presented strategies that communities might consider incorporating into their land use regulations to encourage more housing where it works best. A link to the webinar recording is here, Zoning for Great Neighborhoods.

This webinar series was cosponsored by the Windham Regional Commission, Windham Windsor Housing Trust and the Mt. Ascutney Regional Commission.


2021 Looking Forward Webinars Series Moves Ahead

In late 2020 the Windham Regional Commission, developed a new webinar series designed to look at how our region moves forward post pandemic.  WRC plans to address a wide array of topics through this webinar series from Brownfields 101 to Climigration (climate migration) with a focus on how these topics affect our region.  If you have ideas for topics of interest, please share them with us!

The fourth webinar in the series, Urine Diversion, An Alternative Approach to Wastewater Disposal, was held in June 2021.  The webinar, presented by the Rich Earth Institute, shared information about this innovative approach that can help protect water resources, as well as make productive use of this valuable nutrient.

Please see the links below to view previous Looking Forward Webinars:

Urine Diversion, June 16, 2021
Conservation Subdivisions, April 21, 2021
Revitalization Financing, February 24, 2021
Community Development Models, October 28, 2020


Opportunity Zone Presentation

This presentation was shared at the Community Development Committee meeting on August 14, 2020 by Jessica Dominguez and Joe Ferrari from EPA Region 1. Opportunity Zones are an important redevelopment tool and can be combined with other financing, including brownfields funds, to close the funding gap and bring properties back to life.  Click here for the presentation.

 


A Downtown and Village Revitalization Resource

WRC, along with Bennington County Regional Commission, has developed a website, Strengthening Southern Vermont, to assist southern Vermont communities with downtown and village center revitalization. This website, developed with EDA Disaster Recovery Funds, provides a toolkit of information and resources to help communities build vibrancy and economic resiliency. Among the resources are links to useful guides and information, implementation strategies, funding sources, case studies, and government and non-profit entities that offer additional information.

 

 

 

Last Updated: 02 December 2021
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