Michigan Prosperity Agenda: Repurposing Property Through Private and Public Partnerships to Revitalize Communities

Michigan Prosperity Agenda: Repurposing Property Through Private and Public Partnerships to Revitalize Communities

Program Explores How to Make a Better Michigan


The Michigan Prosperity Agenda is a monthly radio show that challenges listeners to help make Michigan a better place to live, work and play by creating vibrant and prosperous local communities. It has aired on News/Talk 760 WJR at 7 p.m. on the fourth Wednesday of each month since 2010.

The hour-long radio program is hosted by Dan Gilmartin, CEO of the Michigan Municipal League (the League). The show is sponsored by the League and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA). The show’s topics focus on the concept of placemaking. To learn more about placemaking visit Dan’s blog: The Economics of Place, the state’snew placemaking resources website, Miplace.org and check out our book, The Economics of Place: The Value of Building Communities Around People, available on Amazon.com.

THIS MONTH’S SHOW airs at 7 p.m. Aprill 24 on News/Talk 760 WJR, and you can also listen now by clicking the links below. We’ll talk about the concept of “Town Gown” and how cities and higher education institutions can work together to improve the economic vibrancy of the whole community.

View past radio shows here.

Listen to the full show: (37:51)


Dan Gilmartin

Dan Gilmartin, executive director and CEO of the Michigan Municipal League.

Listen to Dan explain what this show is about: (1:16)

Claire Nelson, Co-host

Claire Nelson, publisher of Model D, found her way to Detroit a decade ago after studying architecture and urbanism at Smith College and Columbia University and living and working in Chicago, New York, Paris and Washington, D.C. Before joining Model D, she ran a retail shop in Midtown called Bureau of Urban Living. As the co-founder of Open City, Declare Detroit, and Mind the Gap, she is passionate about walkable neighborhoods, independent retail and public space.

Listen to Claire explain why she’s a “geek about cities” and the spirit of collaboration she’s seeing in the Detroit area. (7:17)


Matt Sviland

Matt Sviland led the Lofts on Ludington project in Escanaba and was selected as the 2012 winner of the Governor’s Award for Historic Preservation. He and his wife Beth successfully transformed Escanaba’s former Richter Brewing Company into a new loft apartment building through a public/private partnership involving the Michigan State Housing and Development Authority and the State Historic Preservation Office.

Hear Sviland give advice to other Michigan entrepreneurs interested in starting up a business: “You just sit down and you start,” he explains. (9:24)


Mark Schurman

Mark Schurman is Herman Miller’s director of corporate communications. One of the overlooked challenges of historic renovation is reimagining a building’s interior to meet today’s modern technology and design needs. The use of space and office furniture design is critical to the success of repurposed buildings. Mr. Schurman will explain why we are increasingly saying goodbye to the office cubicle.

Hear Mark explain how his company is able to attract and retain Michigan’s talented workforce.(9:54)


Fred Kent

Fred Kent is a leading authority on revitalizing city spaces and one of the foremost thinkers in livability, smart growth and the future of the city. As founder and president of Project for Public Space (PPS), he is known throughout the world as a dynamic speaker and prolific ideas man. Traveling over 150,000 miles each year, Fred offers technical assistance to communities and has given talks across the U. S. as well as internationally. Each year, he and the PPS staff train 10,000 people in placemaking techniques.

Kent says that “Michigan is the center of place in the world.” Hear him explain why. (9:52)


Mar. 27, 2013: Town-Gown Partnerships Between Cities and Universities Helping to Move State Forward

Feb. 27, 2013: Retiring Baby Boomers Provide Opportunity to Communities

Jan. 23, 2013: Aging in Place

Dec. 26, 2012: Placemaking in Michigan – A Year in Review

Nov. 26, 2012: What is Placemaking and What is MSHDA’s Role in It?

Oct. 24, 2012: Embracing Green Technology in Neighborhood Revitalization

Sept. 26, 2012: Entrepreneurs are Key to Economic Turnaround

August 22, 2012: The MIplace Partnership Initiative Improving Cities and Neighborhoods

July 25, 2012: Arts and Culture Important to Placemaking

June 27, 2012: Entrepreneurs Key to Thriving Michigan Communities

May 23, 2012: Attracting Talent Key to Michigan’s Future

April 25, 2012: How Do We Bring it Back to Michigan?

March 28, 2012: Vibrant Michigan Downtowns Good for Business

Feb. 18, 2012: Making Our State More Sustainable

Jan. 25, 2012: The Benefits of Federal Funding for Neighborhood Stabilization

Dec. 29, 2011: The Year in Review

Nov. 27, 2011: Transportation in the State and the Role it Plays in Michigan’s Future Economic Prosperity

Oct. 26, 2011: League’s Recently Released Book Emphasizes Quality of Place to Michigan’s Economic Prosperity

Sept. 26, 2011: How will Michigan’s foreclosure crisis impact the state’s future prosperity

August 24, 2011: League Releasing Book Emphasizing Quality of Place

July 27, 2011: What’s Happening in Detroit and Other Communities to Make Michigan Better

June 22, 2011: What’s Happening in Detroit and Other Communities to Make Michigan Better

May 25, 2011: Why Transit Matter’s to Michigan’s Future Prosperity

April 27, 2011: Why Place Matters to Michigan’s Future Prosperity

Mar. 23, 2011: Gov. Rick Snyder’s Proposed Budget and What it Means for Michigan

Feb. 23, 2011: Gov. Rick Snyder’s Proposed Budget and the Potential Impact on Michigan Cities

Jan 26, 2011: Civic Engagement and Getting People Involved in the Community

Dec 23, 2010: Why Higher Education is Among Main Pillars for Building Michigan’s Future

Nov 24, 2010: New Leadership and the Impact on Jobs, Education and Quality of Life

Oct 20, 2010: Michigan Governor Candidates Talk Cities

Sept 23, 2010: Economic Development and Entrepreneurship

Aug 25, 2010: Green Initiatives

July 28, 2010: Economic Gardening

June 23, 2010: Rightsizing Cities

May 26, 2010: Attracting and Retaining Talented Young People

Apr 28, 2010: The New Urban Neighborhood

Mar 24, 2010: Arts, Entertainment and Culture

Feb 24, 2010: Talking Transit

Jan 27, 2010: Making a Better Michigan

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