Resilient St. Louis and 100 Resilient Cities
100 Resilient Cities -- Pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation.
About Resilient St. Louis
St. Louis is located at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, making it a major United States port. Surrounded by wealthier suburban communities, the relatively small city has suffered from a lack of economic diversity, hindering its ability to become more resilient. Many residents live in neighborhoods with high poverty and high crime rates, which reduce community safety and inhibit investment and growth. Officials recognize that building resilience will involve addressing long-standing racial inequities, aging infrastructure, natural disaster response, education and public health deficits, and other challenges in an equitable manner to help reduce social and economic tensions citywide.
In addition to addressing St. Louis' challenges, resilience building is also about acknowledging the city's strengths, and creating coalitions and support systems in order to build upon these assets.
For example, one area of planning that has seen significant success in St. Louis is flood prevention and response. Lower-lying areas are protected by a combination of levees, floodwalls, and pump stations. Emergency responders, Police and Fire departments, Public Works and Health employees, and residents have built on past experience with severe floods to coordinate and manage efforts collectively.
Patrick Brown serves as St. Louis' first Chief Resilience Officer, working in coordination with the 100 Resilient Cities network to craft and implement St. Louis' Resilience Strategy.
About 100 Resilient Cities
100 Resilient Cities -- Pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) is dedicated to helping cities around the world become more resilient to the physical, social and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. Resilience is the capacity of residents, communities and operations to survive, adapt, and grow in the face of stress and shocks, and even transform when conditions require it.
100RC supports cities all around the world in the creation of resilience strategies that better prepare them bounce back from shocks like earthquakes, fires, floods, etc., but also from the stresses that weaken the fabric of a city on a day to day or cyclical basis.
Examples of these stresses include high unemployment; an overtaxed or inefficient public transportation system; endemic violence; or chronic food and water shortages. By addressing both the shocks and the stresses, a city becomes more able to respond to adverse events, and is overall better able to deliver basic functions in both good times and bad, to all populations.