Business Attraction and Recruitment Strategies

Clark Street in Lincoln Park Commercial District Study 
Lincoln Park Neighborhood, Chicago, IL

Completed 2012

The Clark Street commercial area in Lincoln Park had strong local spending power and a stable community, yet was unable to compete with its more desirable regional neighbors. While other commercial areas nearby had become destinations for boutique clothing or a variety of dining options, Clark Street had failed to capitalize on its own assets and had become a commercial area without a compelling identity as well as lacking a critical mass of strong destinations. 

PLACE discovered resident groups with clearly different needs and sub-districts with very different opportunities and challenges as part of the economic development plan. PLACE identified specific retail niche markets that could be developed or supported to improve the competitiveness of the district. Working collaboratively with the Chamber, PLACE developed clear and implementable recommendations in three phases, created engaging materials for proactive business recruitment, and produced concise summaries of findings and recommendations to communicate the plan to elected officials and neighborhood groups.

Lakeview East Business Attraction and Retention Strategy 
Lakeview East Neighborhood (LVE), Chicago, IL

Lakeview East is a dense lakefront community of over 50,000 people on the north side of Chicago. While areas like Lakeview East pride themselves on an array of locally owned restaurants and boutiques, the neighborhood was feeling the pressure of rising rents and suffering from increasing turnover. Additionally, there was a perception that the composition and retail demands of the community were changing. PLACE Consulting was engaged to develop a comprehensive business recruitment and retention strategy for the neighborhood.

PLACE developed an action plan that included recommendations to address retention issues, viable recruitment possibilities and district-wide improvements that were needed. PLACE also developed eye-catching materials that highlighted the key advantages of LVE as a place to do business, so the Chamber could target the types of businesses that research indicated would fit well in the community. A concise summary of the key findings and recommendations was developed to communicate the vision, goals and objectives to local elected officials and neighborhood groups.