GROWING GREENWOOD FUND

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GROWING GREENWOOD | FUND

GREENWOOD COUNTY KANSAS

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVE

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   ARTIST CONCEPT SKETCH: Jamie Michel, SMALL TOWN STUDIO, UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE, DESIGN AND PLANNING. (2014)

LIVING WITH THE PAST BUT NOT IN THE PAST

 

 

 

BUSINESS PLAN

 

Welcome

Almost forgotten amongst the hills of Greenwood County Kansas, there is a place that we call home. A small hamlet with a population of about 2500. We are part of a larger region known as the Flint Hills. The locals just refer to it as the Tall Grass Prairie.

The Eureka project is a culmination of several years of engagement at a community level, with the small-town studio at Kansas State University, College of Architecture, Design and Planning. Our first project is an abandoned building with a catastrophic structural failure on the back quarter of the building. This constitutes a leap of faith to be sure, but it is starting to look like shear defiance of existing conditions that are far to prevalent here in Eureka.

The Eureka Project llc. A company dedicated to helping provide a stronger and more resilient future for the community of Eureka KS. We are a for-profit Community Development Company.

We will be a resource for investment. This will include a select group of strategic partners. Our purpose is to reinvigorate and enhance the communities social and economic state through improvements to the built environment. We are about creating enterprises that create jobs with dignity, opportunity, and a sense of purpose.

Stay in touch … we may need some help.

Larry Coleman

The Brief

Every project starts with a brief. A simple statement of intent and a clarity of purpose. 200 N main is a highly unlikely project within the context of Eureka. The building has not been in use for decades and has a catastrophic structural failure on the rear of the building. 200 N main is a metaphor for the general condition of Eureka Kansas. The location is in the center of the Main Street district, and it is indicative of the condition of numerous buildings within that central core.  Saving the building and making it useful and productive again will require a substantial investment and the assumption that Eureka can reinvent itself and compete with other towns within the region.

The opportunity here is the ability to create and activate the building in a matter that allows for additional opportunities to move the 200-block district into a business hub.

Innovation Center

CONNECT | COLLABORATE | CREATE

The mission of the incubator is to inspire, encourage, and provide resources for citizens to realize their vision while making the community stronger through economic revitalization.

FOCUSES ON THE LOCAL ECONOMY
Focusing on community resources. Local businesses that start in their community are less likely to leave the community.

INVEST IN CITIZENS WITHIN THE COMMUNITY
A business incubator does not solve economic development problems by imposing ideas onto citizens, it invests in the ideas, passions, and creativity of citizens within the community. Their vision becomes reality and economic development grows.

IMPROVES TOWN APPEARANCE AND ENVIRONMENT
As businesses mature, they begin to occupy vacant spaces throughout the town, bring activity and energy to the city.

LONG TERM SOLUTION
As small businesses mature and move on from the incubator, space becomes available for new start-ups to begin.

Erin Pilcher – Small Town Studio 2018

 

 

The main level is a Regional Innovation Center including numerous profit and non-profit entities working on parallel paths towards a stronger future for small towns within the Flint Hills Region. The Innovation Center will be a member only, coworking facility with a central theme. Private office suites on the upper level.

There will be a Coffee Shop / cafe that will be open to the public.

The lower level will be a Storm Shelter Pub / gathering place for members and open to the public on weekends and evenings.

 

 

 

200 N MAIN PROPOSES TO MERGE THREE MATURE INDUSTRIES INTO ONE LUCRATIVE MULTI FACETED CENTER

 

MANAGEMENT

 

We are not competing with other small towns; we are competing with all towns. A small town is an urban environment located in a rural setting. A lot of the urban planning principles apply if we can retain the values, authenticity and the community qualities that exists in a small town.

 

OUR VISION & MISSION STATEMENT

We are a community in decline and a rebuilding mode after numerous natural and manmade disasters.

WE HAVE AN UNDERVALUED SET OF UNIQUE OPPORTUNITIES.

What will be required is a radical transformation of the way we conduct business, starting from the mayor’s office down. Millennials and retirees are flocking to the cities where they have certain cultural opportunities. Given the complexities and expenses of a large City, we will find the small towns becoming increasingly critical to maintaining a diverse and productive country. For Eureka, this will require a clear vision and the energy to overcome the resistance we will meet along the way.

The vision must be large enough to warrant the amount of investment and effort to stop the downward spiral. We are not competing against other small towns; we are competing against all towns.

Larry Coleman

Larry has over 35 years of experience and architecture, design, project management, small scale development. He has worked in Los Angeles and Seattle and returned to the Midwest 10 years ago. He has been active mentoring and hosting the small-town studio from Kansas State University College of Architecture, Design, and Planning for four years in Eureka

THE FLINT HILLS ARE WELL KNOWN TO TRAVELERS FOR THEIR BEAUTY AND VAST VISTAS.

There is a new attitude, a demand for more products and services. If you have a business, a passion to start a business or just the desire to live in a small town, surrounded by open spaces and a sprit to match, we should talk.

COMMUNITY INVESTMENT is the same as INVESTING IN OUR FUTURE

Making Your Money Mean Something.

Remember when investing was all about the financial returns? For a growing number of individuals and families, those days are long gone. Today’s investors increasingly want other kinds of returns as well. They want to travel with friends to faraway places, collect fine wines — and even own the winery. They want to scour galleries for the next up-and-coming artist or style. They want to take action to aid people or areas in need, spending a vacation helping to build a school in Africa, perhaps, rather than just lounging on a secluded beach.

Bottom line: Investors want to put their money into products and companies they admire, causes they care about and personal passions that bring them joy. An excerpt from a City Gold Commercial …. It is critical that we invest locally.

Local Land banks are not financial institutions. They are public and/or community-owned entities created for a single purpose: to acquire, manage, maintain, and repurpose vacant, abandoned, and foreclosed properties –the worst abandoned houses, forgotten buildings, and empty lots. This methodology is valuable to help put a floor on Real Estate values and stop a decline in property values.

WHEN A FLOWER DOESN’T BLOOM YOU FIX THE ENVIRONMENT IN WHICH IT GROWS, NOT THE FLOWER.

” What is a startup community?

The entire community working in unison to make a great place for entrepreneurs! To do this you need several components.

Manufacturing capabilities that can produce any prototype. Available creative and adaptable space. City

and county governments that are on board. A creative core including students, professionals, and advocates. A culture of business and business development. The ability to enjoy and appreciate the environment, cafes, coffee shops, entertainment. Financing and Capital Funds that finance infrastructure, business development, and culture.

 

YOU NEED TO KNOW WHAT IS POSSIBLE IN ORDER TO CONTEMPLATE WHAT IS NECESSARY.

There is always a core starting point. It could be a historical district, financial district, arts, and entertainment district …We refer to this as the District Imagine a District where locals and visitors can come and shop, dine, interact, and explore. A place driven by food, culture, and experience. Enhance and honor our way of life here on the plains. With education, culture, and civic programming, The District will demonstrate the qualities and sensibilities of Eureka. This district will celebrate the authenticity of this city to visitors and reinforce the pride of locals.

The District that will connect and bind the city together. By bringing new merchants, restaurants, residences, entertainment, and hospitality to the district, we will provide a unique and authentic experience, our authenticity is our most valuable asset. Our community is unique, and it illustrates our culture and way of life. By preserving it we preserved our heritage, culture, and way of life … so let us celebrate that.

LIVING WITH THE PAST BUT NOT IN THE PAST

TO PROMOTE A SENSIBLE GROWTH STRATEGY AS WE RE-EMERGE AS ACOMPETITIVE REGIONAL ZONE

GREENWOOD COUNTY

 

Strategic Plan 2050

Workforce – Prepare, Advance & Renew Skills
Innovation – Discover, Develop & Deploy Technology
Capital – Initiate, Expand & Restructure Enterprise
Logistics –Transport, Communications & Sites
Resources – Power, Water & Waste Management
Governance – Tax, Regulation & Administration
Quality of Life – Housing, Health Care, Recreation
Exports – Promotion, Education, Financing thru our local Market Place

 

“Rural pleasures & the pursuit of an engaging life”

HERO WORSHIP
JIM BROTHERS – SCULPTOR

 

When you see the projections for population over the next few years it makes you think.

We can live a peaceful and productive life with diminishing population figures. If we invite people to experience and visit our county and if their visit is positive, well this makes us feel better about ourselves. The truth is that we just do better with a upwards trending population.

County wide population (Greenwood County)

2000 – 7673

2010 – 6689

2016 – 6181

2021 – 5852

taken at face value … well it is a forgone conclusion.

The way you counteract negative demographics is with a Vision and then a Plan.

Flint Hills regional network of leading-edge businesses developing shared strategies for revitalization. An accelerator initiative empowering local small businesses to compete in a larger, more complicated marketplace.

Spotlight on a local business that get’s it!

Salt Creek Farm Store

Adjusting to market conditions and serving a local and internet market. Well Done!

Entrepreneurship
Business and Education alliance
Perception
Talent coordinator
Housing
Commercial
Government
Marketing and Communications
Digital and Video Marking
Holiday and Event Marketing
Community Outreach
Community Enhancement
Community Event Funding
Strategic Plan Development
Educational Engagement

McDowell County W Virginia

 

“We have really seen some dark days,” says Kathie Whitt. “I do not feel that we have a good future based on where we are now. I think that McDowell County will continue to deteriorate.”

Many small towns are stuck in the past refusing or unable to move forward.

The following are several excerpts from an article by Ronald Bailey that illustrate some haunting similarities from McDowell County West Virginia.

STUCK

A Reason writer returns to Appalachia to ask: Why don’t people who live in places with no opportunity just leave

Ronald Bailey from the January 2017 issue

I last visited McDowell County, West Virginia, over 40 years ago. Even then, I was already an outsider, a visitor to my family’s past.

Sometime around 1950, my grandparents and all six of their grown children pulled up stakes and left McDowell behind.

Welfare

“The provision of subsidies to induce people to stay in…place delays the inevitable. At worst, such subsidies effectively retain the kinds of people who are the least able to adjust, ultimately, to market forces,”

If President Eisenhower has “come to McDowell County, he would have seen a once prosperous people—the people of the largest and most important coal-mining county in the world—who were now the victims of poverty, want, and hunger.”

“Poverty is a thief,” the Times quoted University of Maryland professor Michael Reich as saying, “Poverty not only diminishes a person’s life chances, it steals years from one’s life.”

Drugs

The state reported 79 drug poisoning deaths in 2015 in McDowell, and, owing to the prevalence of injection drug use, the number of HIV infections is the highest in the state.

As background, the West Virginia Health Statistics Center reports that drug overdose deaths in the state increased from 212 in 2001 to 726 in 2015, while opiate-related deaths rose from 147 to 628 over that period. Whitt says that the Welch Community Hospital asks four questions of everyone

 

Work

“The unskilled, the unmarketable can’t go anywhere.”

According to the latest figures from the Census Bureau, 25 percent of McDowell County residents under age 65 are disabled, compared to 8.5 percent nationally. In addition, only 32 percent of residents over age 16 are in the civilian labor force, compared to the national rate of 63.5 percent. The median household income in McDowell is $23,607, compared to a national figure of $53,482; per capita income is $14,813 vs. $28,555. The Census Bureau reports that more than a third of residents are in poverty. Nationally it’s 13.5 percent.

One of the big problems confronted by McDowell County’s schools is attracting and retaining teachers. Many commute from the more prosperous Mercer County next door. In fact, Whitt tells me 70 percent of the professionals, lawyers, doctors, and teachers working in McDowell do not live in the county. Interestingly, that includes Elmore. So the Reconnecting McDowell task force has cobbled together grants to build housing for teachers in downtown Welch on the site of an old furniture store. Right now the building site is a hole in the ground, but eventually it will have 28 to 32 apartments, communal spaces, and a coffee shop.

The vast majority of good jobs in McDowell are in government or nonprofit social services. According to the Blueprint Communities report, the public sector accounts for 33 percent of employment in McDowell County. The largest employer is the school board, and teacher salaries average just over $40,000 per year. Entry-level federal correctional officers earn $39,000 annually. That’s considerably more than the median household income of $23,607.

 

Sorry

Beverly Slagle is a 73-year-old woman who is rearing two of her great-grandchildren, an adopted little girl, and a little boy of whom she has obtained custody. These legal arrangements are important because it means that Slagle, rather than her wayward granddaughter, receives the various social welfare payments to take care of the kids.

Asked why she takes care of her great-grandchildren, Slagle replies, “If we don’t, who is going to take care of them? If we don’t do it, social services will send them out of state.” She says her granddaughter, now a 22-year-old home health care aide “on pain pills,” has had three children by three different boyfriends. “They are so sorry; they just don’t want to do right. They stay on their phones and gadgets all day while their babies are doing God knows what.…Young people are not like when we grew up. Kids had chores then; now they only have gadgets to play with.”

Cold Turkey

So why don’t people just leave? That question is actually surprisingly easy to answer:

They did. After all, 80 percent of McDowell’s population, including my grandparents, cleared out of the county to seek opportunities elsewhere during the last half-century.

McDowell are being bribed by government handouts to stay put and to stay poor. Drug use is the result of the demoralization that follows.

 

Comment by: local resident

backwards is

NEVER

the answer.

Coal is not the resource it use to be. Also with the modern coal extraction you need very few physical men to do the job. First, the local community need to look around and see what skillset is inside the community, (Huntable, Farmable land, historical building) focus on what is already there. Clean up the towns, if you want to attract a medium size employer there need to be a reason. If the people look like they care about their homes that’s a good start. 2nd there will NEVER be another employers / industry in Southern WV like coal. — The truth be told if the citizens of Southern WV would work together think forward, use the modern technology, and use the renewable resources Southern WV has it could be turned around. — I speak from experience. I moved to Southern WV 10 years ago started a small B&B, just expanded to included permaculture farming, and plan to open a small farmers market in late 2015. It took a lot of work, but I started with very little money in my pocket. So I know it’s possible.

Every community has the opportunity to re-invent itself and adjust to market conditions instead of just moving to where it is perceived that there is opportunity.

Tucker County W Virginia

 

Move Over, Woodstock: There’s a New Generation of Great American Small Towns

By Stephen Heyman April 14, 2017

 

 

From the Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia to the Sonoran Desert near the Mexican border, there’s a fresh wave of picturesque hamlets calling out to upscale urbanites seeking refuge.

 

There is something preposterously lovely about the century-old brick storefronts, with their gingerbread trim and flowerpots. But despite the period atmosphere, Thomas (population 600) feels strangely modern. East Avenue, its main drag, contains a third-wave coffeehouse, a vintage-record store, a craft brewery, art galleries, and smartly curated antiques shops. An upscale, seasonally minded restaurant, Rudolph’s, is scheduled to open soon.

Hidden in Tucker County, one of the least populated parts of West Virginia, Thomas was not long ago an emblem of Appalachian decline: the decrepit shell of a formerly prosperous coal town, abandoned save for a mean biker bar and a novelty Christmas shop. Things began to change in 2002, when John Bright opened the Purple Fiddle, a mountain lodge in an old country store that has become one of the best and most eclectic places in the region to hear live music. On any given night, you might catch a hillbilly quintet playing fiddlesticks, or a Joni Mitchell look-alike performing barefoot in a peasant dress, or a troupe of Tuvan throat singers who sound like human didgeridoos.

The Fiddle established Thomas’s reputation beyond the Alleghenies. With the arrival of Cooper House, a quirky “bed and cocktail” that serves afternoon cocktails instead of breakfast, and Front Street Grocers, a natural-foods store, nearly every storefront on once-deserted East Avenue is occupied. On weekends, the town fills with first-time visitors who’ve driven from Washington, D.C., or Pittsburgh (both less than four hours away). They wander around in a state of confused wonder. They’ve heard about this place, yet they can’t quite understand how it exists.

Thomas is only one in a constellation of newly modish small towns across America. As midsize metropolises from Denver to Austin to Portland to Pittsburgh have flourished, once-ordinary hamlets in the orbit of those cities have undergone makeovers to cater to young knowledge workers and “creatives” who desire weekend destinations that offer not just proximity to natural wonders but also proximity to natural-wine bars. These towns are the successors to communities like Ojai, California; Woodstock and Hudson, New York; Taos, New Mexico; and Sedona, Arizona — specks on the map whose fame seems out of proportion with their populations.

The urban transplants who have helped reshape these towns, combine small-town charm and big-city culture in one cozy package.

These days, all it takes is a single influential project to push curious city folk out into the country

While towns like Thomas rely on visitors to grow and sustain themselves, sometimes their charm and possibility prove so seductive that visitors become part- or even full-time residents.

Part of the appeal of these small towns is how removed they can feel from the anxieties that complicate life elsewhere in the country.

But as much as they serve as refuges, they also offer a measure of hope by challenging the currently popular notion that an insurmountable divide has opened between urban and rural America.

GROWING GREENWOOD

INITIATIVES THAT WE ARE CONSIDERING

A COUNTY WIDE STREET TREE PLANTING PROGRAM TO PROVIDE LIVING TREES AS A MEMORIUM / LEGACEY OF THE PEOPLE AND ORGANIZATIONS THAT CALL GREENWOOD COUNTY HOME.

 

MADISON STREET TREES

 

Josh Goldstein
Fifth Year, Architecture Graduate Student

Kansas State University
Small Town Studio | 2013
Kansas State University
College of Architecture, Planning, and Design

PROJECT NARRATIVE
“Adapting a post-industrial relic to
create a unique recreational open space for an underserved Eureka neighborhood.”

BRIEF

To help uncover the mystery of the Random School. The school is known to anybody that grew up here in Eureka. It is abandoned and nearing the stage where it will be torn down.  Josh from the small-town studio completed a study of possibilities that is an elegant solution.

We think the Random School still has something to teach us all.

The Random School Park Video project:
A visionary prelude to what could have been.
Produced by two Eureka High School Freshmen

 

 THE   EMBASSEY

PROPOSED MURAL: THE PRAIRIE FIRES OF SPRING

THE HISTORIC DISTRICT | EUREKA KANSAS

EUREKA STUDIO | A Rural Community Design Center
Historic District | 105 w Third Street | Eureka Kansas   67045
360.551.7725
Get in touch … we’ll start a project!

Regardless of our backgrounds,
we all want the same thing for our
children and grandchildren…
If this is true…
We need to get to work.

Support our mission and we can make this happen.

Your donation to The Fund is tax-deductible. Your contribution will enrich the community at large.
We invite you to be our partner.
• In the memo line write: GROWING GREENWOOD Fund.
• Print and fill out the form below and include it with your check.
• Mail to: …………………
• To donate online Visit the Emporia Foundation. Select “GROWING GREENWOOD Fund” .

GROWING GREENWOOD Fund

is registered with the Emporia Community Foundation,

a 501c3 organization.

Emporia Community Foundation
Becky Nurnberg | Executive Director
Email: Becky Nurnberg <becky.nurnberg@emporiacf.org>
527 Commercial St., Suite B, Emporia, KS 66801
Phone: (620) 342-9304
Email: emporiacf@emporiacf.org

 

 

A NON-PROFIT COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT FUND

 

 

 

larry@campestral.us

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