GRI understands that economic development is the foundation for healthy and resilient communities. Economic vitality attracts and supports people desiring to live and work in a community. In turn, economic development is contingent on supportive and resilient infrastructure systems and functions such as energy, transportation, telecom, healthcare, water, waste, housing, and public safety.
GRI’s community resilience enhancement work shows that economic and supporting infrastructure development is most successful when it is supported by close partnership between the public and private sectors in collaboration with civic organizations that engage residents in formulating and supporting a shared vision for their community. Major cities across the United States are beginning to develop such a culture of collaboration, positioning them to take full advantage of incentive programs, such as the creation of Opportunity Zones authorized by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 as one example, which can put private capital to work in ways that benefit investors and underserved communities alike. The result will be investments that measurably improve economic and social outcomes for all.
Derived from over a decade of applied research in collaboration with several U.S. national laboratories and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the components of the I-RES have been developed to provide communities with a comprehensive decision-support process to guide the prioritization of their investment needs for enhancing infrastructure and community resilience, thereby reducing risk to the affected community and to investors while increasing the probability of success for all stakeholders. The I-RES ensures that both community and investor interests are served. Development investments are assessed for community resilience impact, and resilient communities increase the potential value of an investment over the forecasted lifecycle of the project. This dual-focus creates a win-win outcome for all parties.
When deploying the I-RES, the GRI team will partner with institutions of higher education and philanthropic organizations who have deep roots in a local community and have earned the trust of its residents. Additionally, GRI collaborates with a stakeholder group made up of local business and industry leaders. Based on the preferences of community leaders, GRI will apply the I-RES analysis to a defined geography, such as one or more neighborhoods, single or multiple Opportunity Zones, special tax districts, or an entire metro or multi-county region. Using a robust data capture methodology, an evidence-based resilience indicator assessment, and a dynamic and proven community engagement process, GRI is able to provide an indication of the likely resilience benefits to be derived from investments in a community setting the stage for resilience focused economic development.
In addition, the I-RES provides investors and developers with the knowledge and data necessary to:
- effectively adapt proposed projects to actual community conditions
- discover project modifications or additions that benefit the investor and the community
- achieve tangible and sustainable social and economic progress for the affected region.
The experts across the GRI have decades of experience and in-depth knowledge to not only understand a community and how to support its goal of becoming more resilient, but also facilitate collaborative approaches which can leverage incentive programs, such as Opportunity Zones which can put private capital to work in ways that benefit both investors and underserved communities.
GRI’s unique Integrated Resilience Enhancement Solution makes us well-positioned to support these development opportunities by implementing a tailored, comprehensive decision-support process that guides the prioritization of a community’s investment needs for enhancing infrastructure and resilience, as well as ensure investor interests are served.