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GOOD Ideas for Cites: Strengthening Local Businesses

How do we encourage the growth of small local businesses? Give them a community center where they can learn from each other.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJwuXJabcTA&

A city's economic health relies on a vibrant community of invested business owners. But how do we encourage the establishment and growth of small, local businesses? As part of GOOD Ideas for Cities Portland, a team from ADX presented its idea for how to revitalize the business climate in Lents Town Center, an area in eastern Portland that hasn't seen the same level of economic growth as the downtown area. ADX was focused on finding great businesses in Lents when its team discovered Marshall High School, which had been closed years earlier. They propose using the school as a small business incubator for the community, where people can learn new skills, set up shop, and connect with like-minded entrepreneurs.

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GOOD Ideas for Cities: Making Local Farmers More Profitable

Many farmers are reporting that they are making less money than ever. How changing the way we buy local produce can ensure their profitability.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4rQliQwpp0

Even as more attention is being paid to bringing farm fresh produce to urban areas, many rural farmers are reporting shrinking profits. How can we ensure the success of these small businesses that are so valuable to a region's health and well being? As part of GOOD Ideas for Cities Portland, Sincerely Interested presented their ideas for how to help small, local farmers become more profitable. Starting with a campaign that brings visuals from farm life into the city, the team proposed some non-traditional ways for the public to engage with buying local produce, from night markets (complete with beer gardens, of course), to artist-farmer collaborations in greenhouses that pop up on city streets.

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