The CPN Institute concentrates on revitalization initiatives by focusing on revitalizing the legacy built environment and infrastructure in the State of North Carolina. As the State economy continues to transition from legacy industries like tobacco, textiles, and furniture, a large amount of the state’s industrial and commercial built-environment and utility infrastructure, in both urban and rural settings, is either dormant or abandoned.
These dormant assets represent a tremendous investment of sunk capital in terms of economic, environmental and social resources. Many of these properties are potential EPA Brownfield Program sites, suspected of contamination or in an unknown condition. They are unused or underutilized assets on the community balance sheet, difficult to reposition and revitalize, and as a result continuing to lie underutilized or dormant with negative impact on the surrounding community fabric.
Through the Re:NC Project, the CPN Institute concentrates primarily on Tier 1 and Tier 2 rural communities to offer comprehensive professional and technical expertise of its membership and collaborating partners, tailored to the specific project at hand. The CPN Institute values our relationships with each community and respects each community’s values and unique attributes. Our role is to work with local governments and community leaders to facilitate discussions and efforts toward redevelopment strategy, community engagement, visioning and financial considerations.
Primary activities and areas of expertise provided by the CPN Institute include:
- Developing a community inventory and database of legacy buildings, properties and utilities
- Securing funding and managing the evaluation of the community inventory, including site analysis, building condition analysis, environmental analysis, and prioritization of projects/efforts
- Developing a revitalization strategy and plan including master planning, community visioning, revitalization workshops and financing strategies.
- Assisting with specific market place repositioning strategy for priority projects
- Providing a network of resources including the UNC system, revitalization experts and partnering non-profit organizations
The CPN Institute has already proven or underway engagements in Shelby, Windsor, Ramseur and Thomasville – two of which are NC Step communities. The North Carolina Rural Center has awarded the CPN Institute an operating grant of $185,000 to work in collaboration with the UNC School of Government to deliver a built assessment and finance program for numerous NC STEP towns over the next twenty-four months.
The CPN Institute has previously worked with the University of North Carolina system and other North Carolina institutions of higher learning to support its research activities and to connect it with the construction related academic and research programs throughout the system. The CPN Institute has worked with Cherokee Investments and its affiliated non-profit foundation, Cherokee Gives Back, to offer increased knowledge and implementation capacity.