ArtPlace is currently developing a set of indicators that reflect the vibrancy of a neighborhood, with the goal of tracking the change in these measures over time to assess the impact of creative placemaking. Vibrancy and diversity are the best proxies we have for quality of place, and quality of place is fundamental in attracting and retaining people with skills, knowledge and abilities and enabling people to thrive in place.

The Vibrancy Indicators will be released later this year. In the interim, here are ten simple signals that you can observe that can tell you if your work is associated with new momentum in your community.

Is your neighborhood moving in the right direction? Answer these simple YES/NO questions to find out.

1 Is the neighborhood cleaner?
2 Does the neighborhood feel safer?
3 Is the neighborhood more attractive?
4 Are there fewer vacancies?
5 Are there more people on the sidewalks?
6 Is there a popular new outdoor gathering place?
7 Is there a popular new indoor gathering place?
8 Is there new evidence of arts activity?
9 Has the local press reported on it positively?
10 Do people in the neighborhood generally agree that the neighborhood is getting better?

As part of our process for developing these tools, we are also developing a means to measure changes in economic, racial and ethnic diversity over time. Having a good balance between high, middle, and low-income families in a neighborhood is one key to promoting economic success and opportunity for neighborhoods in every income group. Thinking strategically about economic integration should be a vital part of our efforts to address poverty and give people the opportunity to thrive in place.