The Business Loop CID was one of six organizations in the nation to receive a Smart Growth America grant designed to encourage local, small-scale manufacturing as a way to revitalize an underperforming area of the city and create new economic opportunities.
In partnership with the U.S. Economic Development Administration and Recast City, Smart Growth America provided free technical assistance to help us create an action plan to identify, support, and promote small-scale manufacturing along the corridor. The Business Loop CID is partnering with Regional Economic Development Inc. (REDI) and other key stakeholders to move this project forward. The resulting action plan was tailored to address the Business Loop’s specific needs by using existing resources and addressing potential obstacles to these local startups. It also focused on inclusion by creating pathways for those left out of traditional funding processes, often women and minorities.
The immediate financial impact of this technical assistance was substantial but the true economic impact of the resulting action plan will be a revitalized, high-performing commercial corridor that fits with the character of the area.
Most recently, The Loop teamed up with Jabberwocky Studios and was named as one of five Etsy Maker Cities in the nation. Etsy and Mastercard’s Center for Inclusive Growth are helping us support local small-scale manufacturers by creating a one-stop shop of resources for makers including a shared branding program, a community-wide awareness campaign, an online makers directory linked to Etsy shops, monthly educational events, regular maker meet-ups, Maker Fairs and tasting events, and assistance locating manufacturing space along The Loop corridor.