Author Topic: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan  (Read 2473 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« on: December 23, 2011, 03:03:50 AM »
New Town Success Zone Investment Plan



A look at Transform Jax's recent presentation to Habijax concerning their efforts in helping to revitalize one of Jacksonville's neediest urban neighborhoods.

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2011-dec-new-town-success-zone-investment-plan

Noone

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2011, 03:20:56 AM »
Very exciting.

dawnemerick

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2011, 09:47:27 AM »
Thanks Metro Jacksonville for yet another insightful article on a community that is filled with incredible assets and history but is marred by chronic poverty, neglect and environmental injustices.

With that said, I think Transform Jax and Habijax completely missed a major opportunity to see and do things differently with this Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. Last month, Metro Jacksonville invited me to be a guest author for a Guest Series feature.  The entire article focused on how the connection between our built environment and the health of a population has been undervalued or even absent. 

When I finished reading this article and reviewing the slides, I cringed when I realized that improving the community’s health was not even considered as a strategy or outcome with the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative.  What was even more upsetting to me was that the results from a 2009 door-to-door community-based participatory health needs assessment conducted in New Town were left out of the mix when developing the case for the Revitalization Initiative.  (http://www.nefloridacounts.org/javascript/htmleditor/uploads/Debrieffor_general_meeting_Read_Only.pdf)   With funding from Baptist Health, the Health Planning Council worked in partnership with New Town residents for over a 7 month period of time to learn more about the health status and causes of health disparities (social and environmental determinants of health) in New town.  Over that period of time, we trained and paid 25 local “Health Builders” to gather door to door surveys (665 surveys) and conduct focus groups (10 groups).  Did you know that Health Zone 1, which includes New Town, leads the city in heart disease mortality, HIV/AIDS deaths, STD rates, teen birth rates, and holds the second highest rate of cancer and diabetes mortality?  Did you know that   Health Zone 1 also has the highest asthma related and uncontrolled diabetes ER visits in the city? Did you know that New Town is also home to the biggest “Food Desert” in the city?  Did you know that there are more liquor stores and fast food establishments per capita in New Town than in any other community in Jacksonville? 

Study after study after study has indicated that 75% of factors that influence a person’s health fall outside of the health care system.  People with higher Walkscores weigh 6-10lbs less on average than people in less walkable locations; people living within a 1/3 mile walk to a supermarket are 11% less likely to be obese.   Unfortunately, it appears that not one bit of information from this community based health survey was used to help develop the case for the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. How can health not be at the table with such an important opportunity in New Town or any other community?

The Health Planning Council along with many of our regional partners like planning, architectural, and landscape architectural design firm ELM have been pushing to change the way Jacksonville thinks about aligning public health and urban planning closer together.  Everyone—planners, journalists, community based organizations, public health officials, hospital CEOs, builders/developers etc. must understand the economic imperative of healthy and thriving communities.  A great example of how neighborhood redevelopment efforts have incorporated the health of their community into their revitalization efforts is High Point, Seattle’s Housing Authority's largest family community - (http://www.seattlehousing.org/redevelopment/high-point/).  High Point was conceptualized and executed in 2004---7 years ago!   Come on Jacksonville! 

While I loved reading this article and it brought a smile to my face, I still strongly believe that Transform Jax and Habijax truly missed an opportunity to take a holistic approach to improving the health, quality of life and the economics of New Town residents. 

Think differently Jacksonville.   

thelakelander

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2011, 10:01:57 AM »
^Thanks.  If it helps, just to let you know, the information described in your post has been collected, considered, and incorporated into what has been presented so far.  Quite frankly, you can't go into a neighborhood like New Town and health planning and its impact on the urban environment not be a factor.  Regarding the statistics posted above, one thing that really began to stand out was the lack of green space and recreation opportunities. 

Quote
Study after study after study has indicated that 75% of factors that influence a person’s health fall outside of the health care system.  People with higher Walkscores weigh 6-10lbs less on average than people in less walkable locations; people living within a 1/3 mile walk to a supermarket are 11% less likely to be obese.   Unfortunately, it appears that not one bit of information from this community based health survey was used to help develop the case for the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. How can health not be at the table with such an important opportunity in New Town or any other community?

Clustering, infill and the addition of a mix of uses within a compact setting are potential opportunities that address the points raised in this post that were mentioned in the slides above.  Also, keep in mind that this is a brief "bird's eye" summary that doesn't include all the slides of what was presented the other week, which revolved heavily around land acquisition and initial buildout strategies. Last but not least, work is no where near complete.  Hopefully, this will help alleviate some of your concerns that health planning has been ignored to date.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2011, 10:10:15 AM by thelakelander »
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

tufsu1

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2011, 11:31:26 AM »
Also note that there are many groups working to revitalize New Town....and health planning is part of the overall Success Zone initiative.

TransForm Jax was specifically working with HabiJax on land use and development issues related to their investment strategy for the future.

duvaldude08

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2011, 12:16:27 PM »
This is absolutely wonderful!
Jaguars 2.0

sheclown

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2011, 06:27:53 AM »
Very exciting. 

JeffreyS

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2011, 09:58:21 AM »
Great article and Kudos to the TransForm Jax team.
Lenny Smash

thelakelander

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2012, 05:22:03 PM »
Quote
Prominent philanthropists Delores and Wayne Weaver and Ann and David Hicks each have donated $1 million to Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville. The HabiJax donations are targeted to support revitalization efforts in New Town, a historic neighborhood west of downtown, officials said.

http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2012-11-06/story/donors-give-habijax-new-town-project-big-boost
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

tufsu1

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Re: New Town Success Zone Investment Plan
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2012, 08:03:12 PM »
great news!