Transformed By Community Economic Development--Southwest Montréal Now Has A Future As Well As A Past
It's taken well on 20 years, but the decline of Montreal's old southwest quarter has been halted. A community-driven strategy, unprecedented in Canada for its scale and comprehensiveness, has turned five rundown neighbourhoods into a hotbed of socio-economic creativity and a political force to be reckoned with. The Executive Director of RESO, the local community economic development corporation (CEDC), explains how this transformation has come about and what challenges the city’s southwest has yet to face…now that it has a future. Among the most inspired and successful community development corporations in Canada, it is exemplary as a local intermediary focused on mobilizing community and external resources for the revitalization and renewal of a specific geographic territory. Also important to note is that this CEDC has played a vital role supporting the evolution of social enterprise in the neighbourhoods it works within. From 1997 to 2003, 43 social enterprises were created that produced 500 jobs.