BEDFORD — Radius Indiana introduces four new Quality of Place Guidebooks to assist local leaders in learning some of the trends and best practices being used in cities and towns for quality of place improvements.

The guides, developed by Radius Indiana’s summer intern Ally Ragan, are intended to introduce audiences to topics that are current and timely as towns and cities seek to support and bring prosperity to their downtown hubs.

Quality of place looks at the physical characteristics of a community: the way it is planned, designed, developed and supported. It affects the quality of life of people living and working in it and those visiting it.

“Communities are looking at their attributes, objectives and priorities in order to focus on the benefits they have during these times. ‘Quality of Place’ is an area cities and towns can use to distinguish themselves from others, thus helping to identify themselves from others and deciding on the demographic they want to attract,” said Executive Director of the Jasper Chamber of Commerce, Nancy Eckerle.

“The tools that Ally Ragan has developed can assist a community as they strive to seek areas they need to work on — in addition to making stronger the areas they excel in.”

The four reports — Downtown Redevelopment, Place Branding, Trail Enhancement and Parks and Recreation — each focus on a topic that was consistently identified as a high priority for local activity in the Regional Opportunity Initiatives Quality of Place and Workforce Attraction Plans, which were developed through the Ready Communities Planning Grant to advance quality of place and workforce attraction strategies in the Indiana Uplands region.

“The ROI Quality of Place plans gave me a real sense of life in the Radius region and what the communities are wanting to add,” said Ragan. “As a southern Indiana native, it’s great to see the communities growing and adapting to the times, especially during COVID-19.”

The guides offer case studies, examples of success stories in communities in Indiana and throughout the United States, and step-by-step instructions on implementing some of the best-practice trends for rural living.

“Quality of place is a growing sector of economic development,” said Radius Indiana CEO and President Jeff Quyle. “We take pride in our rural communities in the Radius region and these guidebooks can help local leaders learn what other towns and cities are doing. I am very grateful to have had Ally as our intern and the work she did on these guidebooks is a great asset to our counties.”

The Quality of Place Guidebooks can be read and downloaded on the Radius Indiana website.

Radius Indiana is a regional economic development partnership representing eight counties in southern Indiana: Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Orange and Washington. Formed in 2009, Radius Indiana also serves as a point of contact in Indiana for Naval Support Activity Crane and leads regional collaboration by leveraging the diverse assets of southwest central Indiana to drive attraction, retention and expansion of business, thereby increasing employment and investment opportunities and quality of life within the region.

© 2021 TMNews.com, Bedford, IN.