Members of a task force focusing on community development heard success stories from Illinois cities large and small Tuesday at a meeting of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® Public Policy Meetings at the Embassy Suites in East Peoria, Ill.
One of the most ambitious projects was a neighborhood canvassing project which involved IAR and the Chicago Association of REALTORS®. The canvassing project took a deep look at neighborhoods, combining economic, population and building survey statistics into a comprehensive report.
“We decided to do what government had decided not to do,” said Brian A. Bernardoni, IAR’s local government affairs director in Chicago. He spoke at a meeting of the Community Development Resource Working Group that develops strategies for bettering communities.
Bernardoni talked about the need to forge perhaps unusual partnerships when it came to assessing a community’s economic promise. He said scout groups and even church groups are potential partners to help gather data.
The result of the 2010 study was a report, “Revitalizing Our Marketplace,” which provided data on 55 communities in Chicago.
The value of such surveys pays off in a number of ways, Bernardoni said. The outreach builds leadership opportunities with community partners, develops a wide body of information that can be used by brokers and buyers alike, and it creates key links between REALTORS® and the state association.