Dallas is honored to have been selected as one of only 100 cities around the world to participate in the prestigious 100 Resilient Cities (100RC) program, pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation. This innovative program is dedicated to helping cities become resilient to the environmental, social and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century.
Dallas has become a member in a global network of the world's most distinguished cities to share information and develop best practices for cutting edge 21st Century Cities.
What is Urban Resilience?
Urban Resilience is the capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses, and systems within a city to survive, adapt, and grow no matter what kinds of chronic stress or acute shocks they experience.
Chronic Stresses :
- Income Disparity/Growing Poverty
- Aging Infrastructure
- Access to Quality Education
- Tornadoes and Hailstorms
- Public Health Outbreaks
- Civil Unrest
Big Solutions for Big Challenges
Cities are a complex network of inter-related markets and systems – the education system, energy system, transportation system, healthcare system, economic and financial systems, housing and real estate markets, etc. Resilient systems withstand, respond to, and adapt more readily to shocks and stresses. Building resilient systems empowers residents to emerge in a stronger position after tough times and enable citizens to live better in good times.
Through innovative programs, lessons learned from pilot projects, and strategic policy changes, cities can transform many of these systems to build and strengthen the resilience of a city, its residents, businesses and institutions. Through research, analysis, and consultation with experts and residents, Dallas has selected four (4) areas of study that will be examined to discover how each particular system can be improved to ease the social and economic stresses experienced by Dallas residents today.
Big Heart for Opportunity
The ubiquitous concern among Dallas leaders is the quality of education available to Dallas school children and our ability to prepare young people for college and the 21st century economy. As the income disparity gap widens in conjunction with inadequate educational attainment, corporate leaders ask whether Dallas will be capable of supplying a future workforce to nourish the insatiable appetite of the robust North Central Texas economy.
Today, many low-skill adults and disconnected youth lack the necessary training and coaching to be successful in the traditional labor force. Dallas must build partnerships and support efforts to establish career pathways for these individuals so they can be positioned to take advantage of the growing demand for middle-skill jobs in expanding economic sectors like health-care and information technology. Through these partnerships, Dallas can harness the strength and momentum of the North Central Texas economy to create economic resilience for all Dallas residents.
Big Healing for a Strained Healthcare System
Healthcare is a $52 billion dollar a year industry that provides almost 600,000 jobs throughout the Metroplex, yet not all residents have access to this wealth of care. Dallas has one of the highest rates of uninsured in the country, almost double the national average. For the first time in history, poor children in high risk neighborhoods have lifespans predicted to be shorter than their parents. Advancements in tele-medicine and virtual care offer big promise to improve public health outcomes for children. Dallas should pioneer partnerships to ensure our children can lead healthy, productive lives.
Big Hope in Hometown Dallas
Dallas is a city of neighborhoods. Neighborhoods are the fertile gardens of rich social life. They nurture human bonds and encourage us to care about our neighbors. They inspire friendships, foster social cohesiveness, and strengthen civic engagement. Strong neighborhoods lift up families and build strong community leaders. Neighborhoods in the southern reaches of Dallas have experienced decades of disinvestment and decline. Children cannot safely play outside, schools do not adequately prepare students for careers, and business cannot germinate and thrive. These neighborhoods can no longer seed opportunity; they have failed their residents. As Dallas prepares for the next bond program, we must rebuild these pockets of despair to become neighborhoods of enduring value and re-instill pride in our hometown.
Driving Big Change for a Transportation System That Moves
Dallas was designed for the automobile, and transportation infrastructure is the backbone of our city. However, 21st century urban mobility will be constructed on mobility access, not lane miles. A superior transportation system will be one that provides convenient, affordable access to all aspects of urban living – employment, education, health care, shopping and services, and recreation and entertainment. Dallas should vanguard big changes in transportation priorities and investments and seize the opportunity of rapidly changing technology to improve transportation equity for all Dallas residents.