Sunday, April 19, 2009

Young Creatives Summit

The rather active UpDayton group from the Dayton Create group hosted this young creative summit. The Dayton Daily News has a report here, plus the usual entertaining comments.

Esrati blogged a critique of the process (which sounds like a variation on one of those strategic planning "colored dot" exercises). It's Great in Dayton has an additional critique of the process. Perhaps the other bloggers will join in soon with comments at their sites.

Here are the four initiatives to come out of the summit, courtesy of the Dayton Daily News:

  • Community Programs for Youth: Particularly targeting youth who are in the downtown areas after school and engaging them in activities that are especially coordinated for them.
  • Communication Hub: Web-based information source about all regional events and items unique to the region. Site would also provide an inventory of all Dayton region attributes (events, parks, cultural opportunities, etc.)
  • Grow Downtown Dayton: Work in partnership with city and business leaders to focus on downtown Dayton in demonstrating more reasons to enjoy the region (such as places to live, eat, and shop). Goal is to promote and attract popular venues/entertainment options to the center of the city.
  • Wayne Ave. Corridor: Create a more interesting, colorful and lively corridor with a well-lit walkway along Wayne between Third and Fifth streets. Work with businesses to clean up and provide unique options.
Which makes one wonder if this really is all that innovative, or just groupthink by the usual suspects (people who already active and who tend to attend these kinds of events). Apparently about half of the attendee's were older, so how represenative is this for "young creatives"?

Notable is that three of the four were specfic to downtown. The communcations hub is the only one that has broader applications for the rest of metropolitan area.

And we've already heard about two of these (pedestrian unfreindly Wayne Avenue and "growing downtown") as they were discussed at DaytonMostMetro at various times (not to mention the obvious intersection with that Greater Downtown Plan).

Yet is all this really going to keep people in the region or attract them here? The closing lines at the DDN article hints at something maybe more basic and fundamental than these four action items:

Topping the list of needs, according to several participants interviewed, are jobs.

“I look at Dayton and I say it doesn’t look too much different than Detroit. Just smaller,” Lewis said.

Well, actually Detroit has a Hamtramck. Dayton doesn't.


Joe said...

I attended some of the event and thought there was more than half "young"people. It was fun, but I wish they could attract a larger number of people to these events. Scheduling a summit at 9:00 for creative types seemed a bit odd. I was "creating" a little to much the night before and missed some of the event... All in all I felt it was a positive event and I met some interesting people.

Frank Coleman said...
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Frank Coleman said...

The event was nice, but yes-there should have been more people present.

Jefferey said...

This event was getting a lot of airplay on the two public radio stations, WYSO and WDPR, so whoever was listening to those stations knew this was happening.

Over the years I've been to two of these visioning or strategic planning sessions, (one was for a design charette for Webster Station and the other was for Riverscape) so the turnout you all got seems to be pretty good compared to what i remember for mine.

Frank Coleman said...

Some of the ideas in my session presented were:

Trolley System- "Park and Ride"
Downtown Grocery Store
Repaint empty buildings
Marketing to a more diverse group
A central website for communication
More eating establishments (downtown)
Downtown murals
Creation of "street teams"/action groups
Bowling alley (downtown)

Brian said...

I know this isn't a nitpick on oh well the event was advertised but a friend of mine who still attends Wright State was somewhat taken aback at how little notice there seemed to be around the seemingly primary target group of the summit. In other words he can't recall seeing or hearing of anything about the summit on campus nor much to do about it in the school paper before hand.

Regardless of all of that, I really hope something comes of it, it is difficult to have several renown colleges in the area and watching the graduates all flee back home or to different parts of the country.