One vision for the City of Asheville 68-76 Haywood Street property and 88,000 citizens

Ideally there would be a large unified award-winning sustainability strategy project on both the 68-76 Haywood Street and Catholic Diocese property on the 100 block. In strategy ‘designing out’ what isn’t desirable is one starting point in relation to a high stakes matter like this. I understand the desire to turn the corner on the […]

Passenger rail to Asheville? Add more value with sustainability innovation

Prior to the announcement of the Asheville Climate Collider I shared my concept for an Earth Science and Sustainability Exploratorium (ESSE), possibly to be located on the former site of Beacon Manufacturing in Swannanoa, NC. As I add more detail over time, this article will also cover my ideas for a National Climate Risk and Sustainability Strategy Center […]

What will Asheville City Center look like in ten years?

Innovative community leadership looks like a public buy-in design for the properties facing St. Lawrence Basilica and what’s now called US Cellular Center. That design thinking effort could have established strategy and been seeking capital right now. For what? For a public trust-oriented development for this, yes, very strategic site. But we still seem to […]

Viable options to inappropriate grid solutions exist

Fighting climate change is economic development. It is national security. It is a central innovation target for quality civilization. “A complex issue like climate change requires a collaborative, multipronged approach that involves all stakeholders. We must continue to work together in forums, act on market trends and incorporate innovative technologies that we cannot even imagine […]

Innovating the process determining future Asheville city council members

There are more than enough serious questions facing cities like Asheville to the point that I’d like to see what risks, opportunities, and strategy incumbent council members and candidates can come up with in collaboration with citizens in a new teamwork formula. I suggest testing the candidates in a CoLab (collaborative strategic innovation laboratory) environment. […]

What is our Top Ten list of things to change and how?

I see folks introducing a lot of causes and new initiatives. Feel free to create a Top Ten list of things to change and how. Post in comments and I will synthesize what everyone posts. Grant Millin’s Strategic Priority Master List   1. Expand and enforce President’s Climate Action Plan and the EPA’s Clean Power Plan […]

Asking questions about trickle-down economics in Asheville is okay

Setting the community, state, and national bar too high worries folks. We know this one. I was recently asked why I would ‘criticize’ the Eblen Charities-Buncombe Schools-NCSECU teacher housing project. As a repeatable path to really dealing with our housing and poverty issues, do we have that now with the Eblen teacher housing project? Guessing… maybe? […]

Community innovation isn’t about subjective guesswork

As an innovation expert I can tell you simply increasing experimentation on poverty programs is not responsible. All the low hanging fruit is gone. The thousands of folks in Asheville actually experiencing poverty or hovering near poverty need responsible leaders at all levels of government.   For example, the idea of some in local leadership […]

Asheville’s affordable housing challenge won’t get solved with magical thinking

We are loading in hotels where affordable housing could go… and more higher paying white collar, ‘green collar’, and ’no collar’ jobs to help pay for higher quality housing for each citizen. People in poverty in Asheville have emergency level needs. Increasing net worth by cutting housing costs and increasing SNAP funds while raising the Federal […]

Buncombe tourism advertising needs to be an industry expense versus public expense

Here’s my email on the occupancy tax and BCTDA: Subj: Buncombe tourism advertising needs to be an industry expense versus public expense, 6/28/15 Greetings to those with local fiscal and legislative control over Buncombe County’s Tourism Development Authority, Heather Rayburn is right that factors at BCTDA’s inception in 1983 no longer apply. I wish the […]