Overview of CBNO Programs
CBNO’s most important programs are the Citizen Participation Program, the People’s Budget Project, and the Bryan Bell Metropolitan Leadership Forum. In addition, a great deal of work is done through our various collaborations. Needless to say, these alone keep us very busy!
However, we do take on other programs, usually ones with a clear link to our core work. Described below are our current endeavors.
Neighborhood Boundary Mapping Project
New Orleans’ present official neighborhood boundary map is so old it might as well be written on parchment. However, having an updated neighborhood map is essential for many reasons, starting with the fact that the Citizen Participation Program must have accurately defined neighborhoods for long-term effectiveness. Even the piece of the Program recently adopted by the N.O. City Planning Commission, which it calls an “NPP”, requires a clear understanding of neighborhood boundaries. Among the other reasons for developing a current neighborhood boundary map are:
- Helps business owners in determining where they may want to locate new businesses and developments, so this is important for promoting economic development. It helps them do market research, identify and meet with stakeholders (over and above the NPP requirements), and potentially identify various partners.
- Critical for ensuring equitable distribution of city, state and federal resources.
- Equally essential for planning and delivery of city services.
- Vital for clear tracking of important quality of life statistics, on everything from crime, blight and poverty to asset and opportunity mapping.
- Having a clear idea of neighborhood boundaries helps identify areas where there are no neighborhood organizations or other community entities, creating situations where residents don’t have very good access to important information that will impact their lives nor opportunities to provide input about issues and projects that will affect them.
- Trust between community and government is increased when residents feel that official government documents align with the reality they experience on the ground.
With assistance from the Neighborhoods Partnership Network, the city’s Neighborhood Engagement Office and the City Planning Commission, CBNO developed a thorough methodology for mapping New Orleans neighborhoods. This methodology was piloted in Planning District 6 (of thirteen in our city) and was completely successful in resolving all issues of overlaps, gaps, etc. The Neighborhood Mapping Pilot Report provides more detail on this initial test run. CBNO intends to partner with the city to complete all thirteen districts by the end of 2013.