Local First Arizona For(u)m zeroes in on the specific issues that come to light in building an equitable, walkable, sustainable Valley. For its Fall slate of programming, For(u)m engages with the production of workforce housing, the entitlement process, and historic preservation, and their attendant barriers and openings in meeting the scale of this housing crisis.
At its root, Local First Arizona is about sense of place. A seemingly simple mission, that in practice, it requires a diverse set of tactics.
In pursuit of that goal, Local First Arizona launched the For(u)m program in March, emphasizing the vital role of the built environment in cultivating an iconic community in the Phoenix metro. Following years of work on adaptive reuse, storefront improvement, and arts- and small-business overlay policies across the Valley by Local First founder, Kimber Lanning, the new program formalizes that work in pushing for responsible infill and adaptive reuse development
“With the For(u)m program we’re seeking to elucidate the vast grey area that currently surrounds urban form in Phoenix. We want a walkable city, but we’re resistant to densification and new approaches to parking; we want affordability, but we’re afraid of subsidized housing; we want great places, but we’re reluctant to innovate in preservation. We’re interested in getting beyond the black-and-white approach to development, and the way real-estate was so extractive in Arizona before the Recession,” says Connor Descheemaker, director of For(u)m.
Up next: Creative Workforce Housing When: Thursday, September 15, 6-8pm Where: El Rancho del Arte, 719 E Main St, Mesa, 85203 Who: Kyle Paine (Community Development Partners/El Rancho del Arte), Panelist TBC (Native American Connections), Ryan A. Kerr (True | North Development), 1 more TBC Info & Registration here.
The Entitlement Process Wednesday, October 12, 6-8pm Unexpected Art Gallery, 734 W Polk St, 85007
Historic Preservation Thursday, November 17, 6-8pm Location TBC