Our Region’s State of Inclusive Community and Economic Development: Where ARE We Going?

2 May


It’s rightly one of Pittsburgh’s hottest community development topics, and we felt that it was time that we had a discussion about what to do about it.

Pittsburgh is changing at a rapid, accelerating pace. Investment of all types are reinvigorating local economies, bringing more opportunities than we’ve had in generations.  But, this makeover continues to pass by communities of color and old mill towns and, when investment does come, it doesn’t include those who’ve already languished for generations. Meanwhile, reinvigorated neighborhoods become unaffordable, displacing people from the opportunities they attract. Lack of quality, affordable transportation access strands people in place, reinforcing the cycle of poverty even as they struggle to pull themselves up. Public and private resources are increasingly constrained and the ability to deliver equitable community development is a greater challenge than ever.  The questions we all have are: Where do we go from here? How do tools and systems shift from stemming decline, to becoming agents for inclusive, equitable growth and opportunity? What new tools and partnerships are necessary?


In this Opening Plenary, May 24 at 9AM, leaders across multiple sectors will discuss challenges, opportunities, and more.  We will hear how Community Benefits Agreements can bring new, reinvigorated connections between banks and the communities in which they invest.  Leaders in philanthropy and government will discuss how they are retooling support of on-the-ground efforts to remake our City and region for the 21st Century, and do so with socioeconomic and environmental justice considerations at the forefront.  PCRG will present its own findings.  Attendees are encouraged to submit their own questions.  Continental breakfast will be provided.

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Chris Sandvig

Regional Policy Director at Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group (PCRG)
Chris works on regional and state issues impacting PCRG’s member communities and manages our GoBurgh program. He’s a long-time transit advocate, Morningside resident, and commutes to work via bike or bus almost every day. Prior to PCRG, Chris spent 9 years in corporate business development for industrial and commercial engineered HVAC systems. He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Penn State and a MS in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University, where he concentrated on urban and regional economic development and public finance.
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