Thursday, October 1, 2020

Understanding the Revitalization Working Group

The Revitalization Working Group, also known as the Revit Working Group or RWG for short, is a committee of Regent Park residents who works with Toronto Community Housing (TCHC) in the development of an engagement strategy for phrases 4 & 5 Request For Proposals (RFP) process. The group is made up of 3 TCHC tenant council members, 3 Regent Park Neighbourhood Association (RPNA) members and 6 community members who aren't involved in either those groups.

The purposes of the Revite Working Group is to 1) understand and prioritize issues related to the revitalization of Regent ParK 2) be informed through lessons learned and 3) create a space for stakeholders to work together and report back to the community on their work.

According to a recent August 6, 2020, presentation by Revit Group member, Daniel Amin, the group has had two initial priorities. The first was a development of a fair transparent process for community members to be engaged in the phase 4 & 5 Requests For Proposals to select a developer partner. This work included three pillars of engagement for the request for proposals process. The first pillar was to help the community understand the RFP and ensure that residents were informed about the process. The second pillar was to create questions for the developer presentation involving working with residents to develop a set of questions that were asked of the potential developer partners at the presentation. Lastly, the third pillar was to score the developers at the presentation, whereupon residents had the chance to score each developer opponent based on how they responded to the community's vision for the revitalization of Regent Park.

A total of 227 residents attended the developer presentation last October, 2019. Those that attended, scored the presentations. These scores were incorporated into the overall score for each proposal and will help TCHC determine the shortlisted proponents for phases 4 & 5.

Finally, the other key priority for the working group, which is also the current focus, is the development of a fair process for the selection of an organization or multiple organizations that would use potential community space in phases 4 & 5. So this work is just beginning and they'll be more to say in this in the future.

By Tyrone Maclean-Wilson

Tyrone is a staff member of the FOCUS Media Arts Centre

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