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Goldseker Foundation Report Offers Strategy For Attracting City Residents

A report from the Goldseker Foundation takes an optimistic view of Baltimore City’s potential for job and neighborhood growth.
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s goal of increasing the city population by 10,000 over the next 10 years is doable, according to report, “Great Neighborhoods, Great Cities, Strategies for the 2010’s.”  Released last month, it details how to improve the city to attract and retain residents.

Among them:
• Focus on retaining and attracting middle-income residents;
• Build from market strength wherever it’s found rather than concentrating all resources on the most distressed neighborhoods; 
• Market properties and neighborhood amenities to potential buyers; and,
• Give city-based employers incentives for workers to live nearby.
Timothy Armbruster, foundation president and CEO, says the report was intended to gather and analyze the demographic and economic data that has become available since the previous report in 2010. The foundation has put the report on its Web site and also sent it by email to public policy and nonprofit groups in order to reach the “opinion leaders,” says Armbruster.
The project started out as a small-scale look at the neighborhoods the foundation traditionally supports, and expanded to the entire city. The mayor’s goal gave the project a sense of urgency.
The report found that Baltimore’s population dropped 4.6 percent from 2000 to 2010. By contrast, Baltimore metro’s population rose by 6.2 percent and Washington metro by 16.4 percent during the same period. It concluded that people were not leaving Baltimore for job relocation.
Armbruster says the Goldseker Foundation’s works with community groups, businesses and nonprofits to focus its expertise and funding. 

“There is widespread interest and enthusiasm about the mayor’s goal,” he says. But it is not a city-project only. The institutions, businesses and public need to participate, too.

To that end, Armbruster has met privately with members of the institutional, real estate and nonprofit communities. He is considering holding forums with these groups as well.
“The response has been positive,” he says.
Source: Timothy Armbruster, Goldseker Foundation
Writer: Barbara Pash
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