What is (CDI) and How Does it Relate to New Hope?
By Andrew Richter
When I was reviewing New Hope’s City Center proposal, I came across a group call the Corridor Development Initiative or CDI. It turns out that they are a group that is “pushing a new process” to streamline “corridor development.” There is too much to talk about in one post but here’s a sample of what they are pushing;
Tired of the cost, time, and conflict involved in contentious development proposals? Discover a better way—the Corridor Development Initiative.
After a particularly difficult development project, have you ever wished there were a better way? Now there is. The Corridor Development Initiative can help you make and keep great neighborhoods by fundamentally changing the way you approach development opportunities. We offer a proactive, facilitated process that brings together all interested parties –governing agencies, developers, and neighborhood and community interests. Through discussions and hands-on planning experiences, we learn, discuss, analyze, and grow to understand market realities that face a particular development site—all before any proposal is submitted to a governing agency.
Hmmmm…..well that sounds harmless until you see the details. Here is what they consider “ideal”
Implementing the growth area goals of your comprehensive plan
Which of course is approved by the Met Council
Developing strategies to strengthen the tax base by replacing deteriorated, blighted, or underutilized areas.
In other words buying more property, tearing it down, and rebuilding at taxpayer expense. Then the cities will get into bed with large corporations who will develop the city’s “vision.”
Connecting greater density and mixed use projects to transportation corridors.
As always, higher density, TOD, mixed use, and transit. The same thing everywhere.
CDI then claims to “streamline the process” quickly.
The goal is to do things quickly once the plans are made. Study groups and comprehensive plans get put together, the groups like CDI push them through as quickly as possible.
Once the plans are on paper and moving forward the CDI call for a “block exercise”
The interactive block exercise is a hands-on opportunity for community members to explore different development options and find out whether their development ideas are financially viable. The process helps people understand the financial issues and tradeoffs a developer will be working with when considering options for a specific site (i.e. mix of residential and commercial uses, surface level or underground parking, amount of green space, number of units, integration of affordable housing, etc.). The goal is to give community members a greater working knowledge of what it takes to make a development project financially viable and to identify a range of preferred development concepts to help guide future development in the area. It was developed as part of the Corridor Housing Initiative, convened by the Center for Neighborhoods.
Look at all the government speak! Do you notice some familiar words? Words like green space, number of units (ie density), affordable housing, options, opportunity….it’s all the same stuff.
Residents are supposed to “leave with a deeper understanding about economic constraints of development, design opportunities in their neighborhood, in addition to issues relating to density, land use, and housing types.”
Here is a section on why you should use CDI;
Our Corridor Development Initiative is a proactive, facilitated process that helps communities make smarter, more informed, less contentious decisions about development opportunities along transportation corridors.
Smarter, more informed, and less contentious? Says who?? Why is whatever the government wants to do always smarter?
Now tell me if you haven’t heard these other reasons before;
Yes, cities can implement agenda 21 even quicker.
It builds consensus
Like Margaret Thatcher once said; consensus is the absence of leadership.
It saves private and public resources
No, cutting government spending and leaving the private sector alone would do that.
It explores higher density development along transportation corridors
Once again, higher density housing, more transit, walkability, biking, trails, and all that crap. The same thing everywhere again. No city can be unique or have its own identity.
So how does this relate to New Hope’s City Center Vision? Find out in the next post!!!!