Rethinking New Communities

A new report commissioned by the city finds that the New Communities Initiative (geared towards revitalizing public housing in the Barry Farm, Lincoln Heights/Richardson Dwellings, Northwest One, and Park Morton communities) is far behind schedule and could benefit from a revamp of project priorities…in addition to $200 million. (DCFPI, 9/30)

The report finds that $200 million in funding – which has not been identified – is needed to complete the New Communities Initiative redevelopment, and this figure does not include infrastructure improvements that will bring the cost even higher. With such a large investment needed, it may be time to take a look at the goal of this project – revitalizing housing for public housing residents – and decide how to best move forward. This could mean continuing with the New Communities plan, but it would also be worth exploring other approaches.

– Meanwhile, a developer has pitched a private project – similar to the goals of the New Communities Initiative – for the Brentwood neighborhood that would be mixed-income housing. (WCP, 10/1)

FOOD | Is it October already? WRAG consultant, Lindsay Smith, talks about why we should get excited for a month chock-full of events and activities to raise awareness about our regional food system and those affected by food insecurity. (Daily, 10/1)

PHILANTHROPY | Eric Kessler, head of Arabella Advisors (and a member of WRAG’s board of directors), takes a look at the importance of grantmaking in juvenile justice reform and how organizations like the Public Welfare Foundation are leading the effort. (HuffPo, 9/30)

– While Montgomery County public schools boast a diverse student body, a new report highlights the need for a more diverse faculty in order to approach the ethnic and racial gaps in the school system. (WaPo, 9/30)

New Federal Guidelines Aim to Rid Schools of Racial Inequality (NYT, 10/1)

– Chancellor Kaya Henderson addressed the public in her second annual state of D.C. Public Schools speech last night, in which she spoke on recent investments being made to improve school quality for students. (WaPo, 9/30)

Five public and private schools in the Washington area receive top honor (WaPo, 9/30)

ARTS/YOUTH | D.C. teens in the Critical Exposure program learn how to capture their surroundings through a camera lens, and tackle social justice issues in the process. (Elevation DC, 9/23)

COMMUNITY | Sheila Herring, former Vice President for Policy and Evaluation at the Millennium Challenge Corporation, has joined the Case Foundation as their new Senior Vice President of Social Innovation. (Case Foundation, 9/18)

Forbes has recently released their 400 Richest Americans List, and the Washington region is home to ten of them.

– Ciara