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Curbside Chats discuss ways that America’s towns can start a real recovery

Have American cities built themselves into a decline?

That’s a central question posed by Strong Towns, a non-profit organization that will hold two free Curbside Chat presentations tomorrow (June 26) in Fargo.

Chats are scheduled for:

–11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fargo Theatre;

–3:30 to 5 p.m. in the Fargo City Commission Room, 200 3rd St. N.

The event initiates honest discussion among elected officials, community members and small business owners on the changing economy and how our cities can respond to it.

“This is a pivotal time for many communities,” write Strong Towns organizers. “Years of unstable property values are now showing up as uncertain revenue streams. Local government aid has been cut, and more cuts are imminent. Budgets are stretched. The shifts and delayed maintenance of prior years are starting to show up on the ground.”

In their search for answers, local leaders have found they are largely on their own.

The standard approach emphasizes growth over resiliency.

Yet, in order to truly do more with less, city dwellers need to understand how we have built ourselves into decline. According to the people behind Strong Towns, America’s towns have used public dollars inefficiently, destructively subsidized one type of development over another and left massive maintenance liabilities to future generations.

Why is the standard approach actually harming our towns and neighborhoods? And what do we need to do to start a real recovery?

Each chat will cover five areas:

1. Background on the current financial crisis.

2. The triggers forcing changes in the ways we inhabit the landscape.

3. The “dead ideas” we need to overcome to renew prosperity.

4. What the encroaching “new economy” will look like.

5. What local leaders can do to position their communities for success in the new era.

To learn more, please visit,, or call (toll-free) 1-888-454-5226.

See you there!

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