Why is it called the Winstanley Neighborhoods Plan?
It is named for the Winstanley neighborhood of East St. Louis, with borders approximately the same as the planning area. It is named for Thomas Winstanley, a first generation American born in 1823. Winstanley lived his entire life in St. Clair County, originally being a farmer and moving later in life to interests around railroading, banking, and other areas of civic involvement. He did not have children, and our planning team does not have any reason to believe that he, nor anyone in his family, was at any point in time a slave owner.
Who is funding the plan and why?
The Winstanley Plan is grassroots. Unlike past plans, this is being funded by a group of banks and foundations who see good work taking place in the neighborhood and want to invest in local potential. These banks and foundations include Commerce Bank, Deaconess Foundation, Enterprise Green Communities, and many more. Click here for our list of sponsors.
Who will fund implementation, and do the work of implementation, once the plan is complete?
The Winstanley Plan will recommend strategies that span economic development, racial disparity, public safety, land use issues, social services, environmental concerns, transportation, housing, educational opportunities, community health, parks and open spaces, and much more. Implementing the Plan will require collaboration among residents, local organizations, and regional stakeholders. We will work with government representatives (such as the City and County), nonprofit organizations (at the local, regional and national level), local business, residents, developers and others to implement the various recommendations of the Plan. Different partners will help fund and implement different components of the Plan. For example, a developer may help implement housing recommendations while a local business may help implement employment development recommendations.
What is the scope of the planning process?
Typical elements found in a community plan include: Land Use; Transportation; Urban Design; Public Facilities and Services; Natural and Cultural Resources; Economic Development; and more. During public meetings, we will ask participants to brainstorm strengths, challenges and opportunities in the neighborhood. From there, we will work together to develop goals and strategies related to the community’s priorities. These goals and strategies will be informed by community input and by data gathered from sources like the US Census. A good example of the final product can be found at the City of St. Louis’ Planning and Urban Design Agency website.
Who will lead the year-long planning effort?
A Steering Committee made up of local residents will oversee the work of the planning team and ensure the effort progresses in the appropriate direction. The planning team will be made up of Rise Community Development, Design Alliance, Development Strategies, and Mt. Sinai Development Corporation. Local and regional entities, including Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis, City of East St. Louis, East St. Louis Housing Authority, St. Clair County Illinois Housing Development Authority, and the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership, will be key partners and invited to participate in the process. Residents and community stakeholders, ultimately, will be the ones who are represented by this plan, and as such it is a plan by and for them.
How will the process be representative of the overall community?
Under the guidance of the Steering Committee, we will work tirelessly to engage a broad and diverse group of residents. Through a variety of community engagement activities, we seek to engage with residents in creative and enjoyable ways so that this process can be a positive and effective experience for everyone involved.
What does Rise Community Development get out of this process?
Rise partners with communities to build stronger, more equitable St. Louis area neighborhoods. As a non-profit organization, it is our goal to work in partnership with local organizations and residents to foster vibrant and inclusive communities. This process aligns with our mission as an organization, and helps build the foundation for a strong future. Rise, along with Mt. Sinai Development corporation, are also developers of high-quality, affordable housing; this planning process will help inform any future work we do in this area.