At today’s GEOINT Symposium, the City of St. Louis announced the next phase of Project Connect, an initiative designed to align City resources, partnerships, and development tools to harness the opportunity presented by the $1.7 billion National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) West Campus and related projects. This new phase will connect NGA West to its six surrounding neighborhoods through a community-driven planning process designed to promote equitable development which meets residents’ needs.
“St. Louis is an economic engine for our entire region, and inclusive growth happens from the ground up, not top-down,” said Mayor Tishaura O. Jones. “This new planning process will build trust and empower the community, helping ensure that these neighborhoods are ready to harness the transformative potential of the $1.7 billion NGA West Campus.”
In the coming months, the City, in partnership with aldermen, Greater St. Louis, Inc, and others, will be rolling out a community-driven planning effort across the six neighborhoods surrounding the NGA West Campus - St. Louis Place, JeffVanderLou, Carr Square, Columbus Square, Old North St. Louis, and Hyde Park - in North St. Louis. With a focus on empowering residents, the effort will help ensure that neighborhood input shapes the development process. The administration plans to roll out the new planning process in neighborhoods across St. Louis informed by this initial pilot program.
“The construction of Next NGA West will catalyze development in the neighborhoods that make up Project Connect, but we need to be intentional that any plans for development are shaped by and benefit residents,” said Jason Hall, CEO of Greater St. Louis, Inc. “Supporting community-driven development in the Project Connect neighborhoods is one of the strategic priorities in the GeoFutures Strategic Roadmap to advance inclusive growth, and we are excited to help move this strategy forward.” GeoFutures is an initiative of Greater St. Louis, Inc.
The planning process will fold into St. Louis Development Corporation’s economic justice action plan currently in development. This forthcoming plan will identify actionable priorities for investments into workforce development, business empowerment, accessible & affordable housing, neighborhood revitalization and more to drive inclusive and equitable economic growth.