How sustainable is any system which requires the agreement and buy-in of those with the deepest pockets and largest portfolios to be successful? Can many small players create the same value in a place that the big guys do? This week’s guests will tell you that the former simply isn’t sustainable, and not only is the latter, but it also creates more lasting value for the community. Monte Anderson and Mike Keen are working in two different places (South Dallas and South Bend, Indiana). Still, they are working to create incremental wealth in the communities where they live, and as you will hear, both of them have been successful at this bottom-up approach to development.
The discussion on this week’s podcast covers topics like financing these small projects and how imperative it is that common sense and effective land use entitlements are to the success of these small, locally-led projects.
About Mike Keen
Mike Keen is a Managing Partner with Hometowne Development LLC, and President of The Bakery Group LLC. A LEED-AP with two decades experience as a sustainability professional, he spent 30 years as a professor of sociology and sustainability studies at Indiana University South Bend.
As Managing Partner of Hometowne Development for the last six years, Mike has taken the lead role in the development of Portage Midtown, a sustainable neighborhood demonstration infill project located in South Bend, Indiana. He is also the facilitator of the Michiana Town Makers ecosystem, an informal network of small scale developers, design professionals, finance officers, real estate agents, property managers, contractors, neighbors, and municipal officials dedicated to helping to create wealth in neighborhoods for neighborhoods.
A social entrepreneur, Mike is trained in The Natural Step’s Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development. He offers seminars, workshops and consulting services to developers, municipalities, and not-for-profits wishing integrate sustainability and/or incremental development into their localities.
About Monte Anderson
Since 1984, Monte has been improving the living and working environments in Texas’ southern Dallas and northern Ellis counties. He’s an outspoken man who cares about people, and he is an advocate for policies and practices that serve urban neighborhoods.