connecting with the community

community driven affordable housing development goes beyond box checking

*ribbon cutting photos: Roland's Photography

Client:

Urban Housing Solutions

Challenge:

Engage a highly gentrified community in a community driven affordable housing re-zoning and phase one opening.

Solution:

Our work was heavily centered around message development; coalition building (including strategic meetings with major community stakeholders, facilitating community meetings and focus groups); and planning a ribbon cutting. This community driven development is a multi-phase, art inspired property aimed to bring together artists and art enthusiasts-including established and new residents in North Nashville, a previously predominately African American community.

For six months we spent a great deal of time meeting one-on-one and in groups with local politicians, faith leaders, artists, and the North Nashville community to introduce the property, identify gaps in messaging, begin the plans for an art advisory group, and ultimately navigate a zone change.

Results:

  • Continued coordination of artist advisory group
  • Facilitated two community meetings
  • Conducted several pertinent neighborhood leadership meetings including council members, faith and political leaders
  • Successful re-zoning of phase two with community consensus about the zoning parameters
  • Event management and photography services for the Phase One grand opening including:
    • partner engagement
    • media relations
    • coordination of the Mayor's office
  • Social media management

Client Testimonial.

Kia is an excellent strategic thinker. During the course of Kia’s engagement with UHS, she was always thinking about and organizing ways in which we could organically cultivate meaningful relationships, with surrounding community members/stakeholders and prospective tenants. She unfailingly dedicated herself to the execution of all shared development project goals…and constantly proposed ways in which she could deliver additional value. We would gladly retain MEPR/Kia again, without reservation...when the opportunity presents.
— Hiram Brown, Director of Strategic Growth
MEPR Agency brought real value to our community engagement strategy by helping us identity and lead effective outreach efforts and by using MEPR’s network to connect us with important political leaders and neighborhood stakeholders.
— Brent Elrod, Director of Planning & Development