The Sheffield Placemaking Action Plan process includes a holistic analysis of key trends, opportunities, and challenges the community faces to achieve a prosperous economic and social future. Quantitative research is combined with comprehensive stakeholder outreach to ensure that Sheffield’s strategic priorities reflect the community’s vision and goals.
Sheffield’s placemaking action plan focuses on three key priorities:
- Key Building Revitalization (“The Grand Theater”)
This webpage is a condensed version of the entire plan. Here, you’ll get a high-level overview of the project and its key takeaways from the Community Assessment, which ultimately informed the strategies and recommendations for the Final Plan. However, if you’re like us and want to dig into the details, we’ve got you covered!
The complete Community Assessment and Final Plan PDFs are available for you to read at the links below.
planning & technical assistance process
- Sheffield assembled a project steering committee comprised of 22 individuals with backgrounds ranging from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. The steering committee is led by a core group of six committee members, who meet more frequently to discuss assessment findings and strategic priorities. The core group convened in January 2021 to kickoff the planning process.
- The steering committee is convened quarterly for meetings to assist with oversight of the placemaking process and to ensure the development of the action plan is community-centered and in alignment with local priorities.
- The Atlas/McClure team convened the steering committee for its first official meeting in April 2021 to provide an overview of the RPIC initiative and the scope of work for the placemaking process before facilitating a visioning session to solicit input about the region’s assets, challenges, and opportunities related to housing and economic development.
- During the Atlas/McClure team’s first site visit in July 2021, the core group met in person to discuss project updates and next steps including visioning, the public input survey, and focus groups.
- A Public Survey was launched and promoted to residents in July, 2021 and was open through September, 2021. It closed with 151 responses.
- In February, 2022 a Focus Group was held at City Hall to review the proposed Grand Theater renovation concepts.
- The community assessment report features high-level quantitative trends for Sheffield compared to three peer communities (Central City, Fredericksburg, and St. Ansgar), the state of Iowa, and the United States.
- The report also incorporates key themes from the stakeholder input conducted to date to determine assets and challenges related to housing, childcare, and quality of life amenities.
- In addition to the quantitative data and stakeholder input analysis, the Atlas/McClure team conducted topical research to contextualize the key trends and issues affecting Sheffield, which ultimately informed the strategic opportunities and priority project concepts in the placemaking action plan.
- Based on the community assessment report, the placemaking action plan presents a new vision statement to guide Sheffield’s future economic trajectory and strategic priorities.
- The placemaking action plan also makes strategic recommendations for priority projects and provides a resource roadmap to help advance them from ideation to reality.
key trends & challenges
The cost to build new housing continues to outpace the wages for a majority of residents.
Recreational opportunities are available, but cultural amenities and social experiences are limited for residents and visitors.
Economic development has been stymied by the lack of access to childcare in Sheffield.
Sheffield is a community of choice with opportunity for all ages and stages to connect, grow, and thrive.
strategic opportunity areas
Several potential strategic opportunity areas emerged from quantitative research and stakeholder feedback. Underlying these opportunity areas and potential projects/initiatives should be a commitment to a progressive, innovative, and sustainable future Allen County residents desire.
- Based on the overall vision, cultivate a compelling story for the revitalization of The Grand Theater • Develop concepts for interior and exterior activation as well as programming for The Grand Theater • Secure strategic partners to assist with redevelopment of the facility, business operations, and programming • Identify viable funding opportunities to support the revitalization of The Grand Theater
- Based on the overall vision, cultivate a compelling story for the revitalization of The Grand Theater
- Develop concepts for interior and exterior activation as well as programming for The Grand Theater
- Secure strategic partners to assist with redevelopment of the facility, business operations, and programming
- Identify viable funding opportunities to support the revitalization of The Grand Theater
- Support the expansion of Sheffield’s existing childcare center
- Obtain necessary funding to develop a new childcare facility
- Explore alternative childcare models that could be implemented to further support the needs of Sheffield residents