Section 1 Introduction to the Target Area Study by gregoria

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									       Section 1: Introduction to the
                   Target Area Study
The Target Area Study is a method to identify and assess the overall physical, socio-
economic, resource and capacity conditions in communities throughout St. Louis County.
The Target Area Study provides a better understanding of the social, economic, and physical
characteristics of individual communities. The Target Area Study is a comprehensive
evaluation of St. Louis County using 16 indicators and a three-step rating system to
determine where St. Louis County’s municipalities and unincorporated areas stand
and what direction these communities are headed.

                                                          means to achieve an identified outcome of the
Background                                                2000-2004 Strategic Plan by establishing the
When the St. Louis County Department of
                                                          necessary criteria to identify areas throughout
Planning began updating the St. Louis County
                                                          St. Louis County that lack adequate resources
Strategic Plan, reinvestment in older
                                                          and capacity. By identifying these target areas,
communities was continually identified by
                                                          resources can be directed to improve economic
citizens and government officials as one of the
                                                          and physical conditions.
most critical issues facing St. Louis County over
the next five years. The Target Area Study was
derived in direct response to the St. Louis               Target Area Study Process
County 2000-2004 Strategic Plan. One of the               The Target Area Study was derived from a three-
outcomes in the Strategic Plan, directed at the           phase study process.
reinvestment needs of older communities, was
to identify those areas lacking adequate                  Phase I: Selecting Community Indicators
resources and capacity throughout St. Louis               Phase I, Selecting Community Indicators,
County. The Strategic Plan recommends that                focused on choosing the community indicators
reinvestment initiatives to improve the                   for the Target Area Study. Prior to selecting
economic, employment, and building conditions             indicators, research was conducted to determine
within those targeted communities be                      the number and types of indicators being used
implemented. The Target Area Study is a                   by other jurisdictions across the country.

                                                          Phase II: Gathering Data and Analysis
         Strategic Plan Outcome                           Phase II of the Target Area Study included
                                                          gathering data and conducting analysis.
  “Communities lacking adequate
  resources and capacity throughout                       Phase III: Conducting a Municipal Assessment
  St. Louis County are identified and                     A countywide municipal assessment was
  reinvestment initiatives are                            developed by the St. Louis County Department
  targeted at improving the                               of Planning and distributed to all 91
  economic, employment, and                               municipalities in St. Louis County. The survey
  building conditions within those                        response rate was 56%, or 51 of 91
  targeted communities”.                                  municipalities. This assessment focused on the
                                                          perceived needs and community priorities in


                            Target Area Study: Introduction to the Target Area Study               Page -1-
each municipality. A map was also included in
the survey to allow respondents to visually                             Using the
identify areas of need. A copy of the municipal
assessment and a summary of the responses                           Target Area Study
are included in the appendices.
                                                              In addition to fulfilling the obligations of the
                                                              Strategic Plan- Reinvestment in Older Areas
Target Area Study Format                                      Outcomes, the Target Area Study serves
The Target Area Study is divided into five key                multiple purposes including:
sections:
                                                              ‘ Assessing conditions. The Target Area
•     Section 2: Trends in St. Louis County                     Study assesses the conditions of
      This section contains an analysis of                      communities in a systematic and factual
      demographic and economic data as well                     method.
      as physical characteristics to provide a
      general overview of St. Louis County.                   ‘ Monitoring         trends      occurring
                                                                throughout St. Louis County. The
      Section 3: Target Area Study Indicators                   Target Area Study creates a baseline of
•
                                                                Countywide conditions. Subsequent
      This section outlines the process of
                                                                updates of the Target Area Study over
      selecting the community indicators.                       time will allow conditions to be compared
      Additionally, a description of each                       and trends identified..
      community indicator, data source, and
      applicability is summarized.                            ‘ Prioritizing and directing resources
                                                                to communities with the most needs.
•     Section 4: Determining Target Areas                       The Target Area Study provides a better
      This section discusses the process of                     understanding of the social, economic,
      determining Target Areas, defines the three               and physical characteristics of individual
      different Target Area ratings, and analyzes               communities. The indicator data will be
      the trends and relationships between the                  used within St. Louis County Government
      community indicators.                                     for developing policy regarding
                                                                prioritization of community projects and
•     Section 5:       Target Area Community                    allocation of financial and personnel
      Profiles This section provides an overview                resources. As a result, resources can be
      of the areas of St. Louis County that were                distributed more effectively.
      determined through analysis of the
                                                              ‘ Setting goals and assisting in long-
      indicators to be Changing and Troubled
                                                                range planning. The Target Area Study
      Target Areas.                                             can be used to coordinate activities within
                                                                St. Louis County Government and among
•     Appendix                                                  other external service providers.
      The Appendix includes a list of the census
      tracts in St. Louis County, community                   ‘ Bench marking and measuring
      indicator ratings for all census tracts,                  progress. The Target Area Study, and
      maps, and a summary of the municipal                      subsequent updates, can be used to track
      assessment.                                               the success of community planning
                                                                initiatives and follow trends throughout the
                                                                County. Additionally, the indicators can




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