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Projects and Priorities for the Austin Community – CANA has a list

June 20, 2011

CANA members have identified a list of goals and projects for the Austin community.

We hope this agenda will spur community leaders, organizations and elected officials to adopt strategic projects and plans for collaboration for the benefit of Austin.  Some ideas are borrowed and some are new but all are needed. CANA is ready and willing to help. Working together we can accomplish great things.  LET’S GO TO WORK.

Projects and Priorities for the Austin Community

The Austin Community Comprehensive Strategic Plan


A Clearly Articulated Vision, Documented Projects, and Measurable Indicators of Success

Economic Development:

  • Create a Community Web Portal to inform residents, facilitate project management, and solicit input
  • Create Community Wide Jobs Plan that address worker training and bringing in new employers
  • Work with City of Chicago Departments  to create development plan for Austin that embraces long term strategic goals.
  • Make use of  Special Service Area (SSA), TIF and other tools to create and direct funds toward strategic goals
  • Direct TIF funds toward key community improvement project
  • Create Business and Entrepreneurship Incubator in Austin
  •  Build Community War Room for Community Improvement Projects
  • Enforce loitering and littering ordinances and increase “no litter zones’


  • Bring a minimum of three Magnet Schools to Austin
  • Bring a minimum of Three New Charter Schools to Austin
  • Work to create a “Promise Neighborhood” to emulate the Harlem  Children Zone Successes

Youth and Family Activities:

  • Facilitate creation of more neighborhood institutions that are independent
  •  Build a Comprehensive Austin Community Center with Park District programs, State of the Art Library, business incubator services (see Bolingbrook’s Fountaindale Public Library  http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-03-07/news/ct-met-library-of-the-future-0308-20110307_1_wi-fi-new-library-library-district  )
  • Increase Services and Upgrade the Austin Town Hall, Columbus Park and the Austin YMCA
  • Position  Austin to be a part of the city’s  “Smart Communities Program” under the “Chicago Digital Excellence Initiative
  • Create Community Wide Anti Litter Campaign in schools, blocks, businesses and apartment buildings
  • Create Community wide Beautification campaigns in schools, blocks, businesses and apartment buildings
  • Develop programs that instill greater sense of pride and elevate expectations of the community and ourselves

Public Safety:

  • Address Poor Police Response Times by demanding release of OEMC Response time data to drive fair allocation of police resources for Austin and other under-served communities
  • Develop Innovative, collaborative  programs to address drug dealing and substance abuse in Austin, community wide.
  • Develop Protocol that focuses on education, services and jobs instead of incarceration but immediately targets offenders with wrap around services and removal from the streets
  •  Create plan and programs to encourage community participation with other efforts to reduce crime.
  •  Develop plan to address criminal activity that negatively impacts “quality of life”.

What does a Strategic Plan Look Like?

Here are a few Examples:

City of Colorado Springs 2008 Strategic Plan

City of Vancouver, WA Strategic Plan May 2008

Phillips County Arkansas Community Strategic Plan

Laboratory for Community and Economic Development – Strategic Planning Tool

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