Hamline Midway Coalition (HMC) is facilitating the formation of a Community Investment Cooperative (CIC) to promote local investment in North Snelling Avenue and other commercial areas in the Hamline Midway neighborhood. The creation of a CIC Working Group is the first step. The working group will work with HMC staff to research cooperative structures, draft a mission statement and bylaws for the new organization, and do the other leg-work needed to create a Community Investment Cooperative.
If you are interested in participating in the working group, please contact Michael Jon Olson, HMC Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 651-494-7682.
What is a Community Investment Cooperative?
A Community Investment Cooperative is an member-owned organization that pools capital and other resources to invest collectively in the economic development of a particular community. There are several Community Investment Cooperatives in operation in Canada and the United States including the Northeast Investment Cooperative in Minneapolis.
Why a Cooperative?
A cooperative provides residents a way to work together to make long-term, strategic investments in their neighborhood. Cooperatives operate democratically – on a one-member, one-vote basis – so all member-investors have equal voting power. Because a cooperative is a for-profit business it can provide members with a modest return on their investment, but co-ops also typically focus on improving social and economic capital.
Why focus on North Snelling Avenue?
In contract to the growing vibrancy of the Hamline Midway neighborhood as a whole, North Snelling Avenue is currently “underdeveloped,” with several commercial vacancies, tired façades, and aging street infrastructure. This presents a unique opportunity for community investment. North Snelling needs attention, but it also has great potential!