New England HUD Peer Exchange Materials (Portsmouth, NH)

Portsmouth BannerOn August 8-9, 2013, the NADO Research Foundation hosted a New England Peer Exchange in Portsmouth, New Hampshire which brought together around 30 participants from HUD Sustainable Communities grants and EPA technical assistance projects in a collaborative and interactive setting to discuss their projects and learn from one another.

Over the two days, participants had the opportunity to share the successes and challenges of their projects, interact with federal representatives from HUD, DOT, and EPA, learn about regional economic development efforts,  tour Portsmouth to learn about the city’s coastal resiliency and economic development initiatives, and discuss ideas in small breakout sessions about funding opportunities and plans for maintaining a strong consortium in the post-grant period.

Peer exchange participants toured downtown Portsmouth to learn about local economic development, streetscape improvements, and coastal resilience efforts in the city.
Peer exchange participants toured downtown Portsmouth to learn about local economic development, streetscape improvements, and coastal resilience efforts in the city.

Through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the NADO Research Foundation is one of eight teams providing capacity building and technical assistance to HUD and EPA sustainable communities award recipients.  The capacity building teams are forming networks among the grantees to exchange ideas on successful strategies, lessons learned, and emerging tools for community and economic development.

Below are links to the peer exchange materials, including presentations, grantee background information, and additional useful information.  If you have any questions about this peer exchange, these materials, or NADO’s work as a capacity building team, please contact Brett Schwartz.

Workshop Materials / Grantee Information

Keynote Presentation:  “Sustainability isn’t about great big things.  It’s about the small things that fit together to make a big difference…”
Noelle MacKay, Commissioner, Agency of Commerce and Community Development, State of Vermont  

Implementing Your Plan Through Local Policy Changes 
The City of Claremont, NH, a FY10 Community Challenge grant recipient, is moving towards project implementation and promoting community and economic development.
Nancy Merrill, Director, Planning and Development, City of Claremont, New Hampshire
Michael  McCrory, Senior Planner, Upper Valley Lake Sunapee RPC, New Hampshire 

Presentations and Tour of Portsmouth
Economic Development in Portsmouth –  Nancy Carmer, Economic Development Program Manager, City of Portsmouth, NH
Sustainability / Coastal Resiliency Efforts – Peter Britz, Environmental and Sustainability Planner, City of Portsmouth, NH

New Approaches to Economic Development Planning 
How Do Economic Developers See the World?  Some Thoughts for Planners Erik Pages, President, EntreWorks Consulting
GROWashington-Aroostook Mike Eisensmith, Director of Regional Planning, Northern Maine Development Commission  

5X5 Presentations
Participants each had five minutes and five Powerpoint slides to highlight key success stories from their projects, followed by a Q & A session.
Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3

Additional Materials
These resources were mentioned by participants during the event and are linked below to provide more information:
planBTV – (Burlington, VT’s Downtown and Waterfront land use and development plan)
Vermont Community Recovery Partnership Report (October 2012)
Robert Liberty Lecture at Vermont Law School (February 7, 2013)  


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Joe McKinney serves as Executive Director of the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO). Headquartered in Washington DC, NADO provides advocacy, education, research, and training for the nation’s 500+ regional planning and development organizations.

Joe has thirty-one years of experience having served in city, county, regional, national association, and government management since 1991. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy Analysis from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is a candidate for a master’s degree in Public Administration from UNC-Chapel Hill.

McKinney has provided congressional testimony on numerous occasions regarding the importance of regional development organizations in helping shape the nation’s economic growth. He is nationally recognized for promoting innovative solutions in areas such as planning and economic development, workforce development, transportation and transit, and aging services.

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