A diverse Steering Committee comprised of representatives from the public, private, and non-profit sectors guided the process and ensured that it lays the foundation that will allow people and businesses to thrive and wealth to accumulate in the community.
The four-phase research and strategic planning process lasted roughly eight months, concluding in March 2017.
Phase 1: Community Engagement
The knowledge and opinions of stakeholders and the public at large are invaluable when identifying the assets to leverage, opportunities to seize, and challenges to overcome. This phase involved reaching out to as many regional stakeholders as possible through an online survey, individual interviews, and focus groups and informed the subsequent phases of the process.
Phase 2: Regional Scorecards and Community Assessment
This phase evaluated Topeka-Shawnee County’s competitiveness as a place to live, work, and do business. It began with an examination of common metrics that influence how external audiences perceive the community. These metrics included a set of “scorecards” that showed how Topeka-Shawnee County compares to other communities. These scorecards were complemented by an in-depth Community Assessment that weaved qualitative and quantitative findings into a set of “stories” that provide a concise narrative of the region’s opportunities and the challenges it will face as it seeks to become a more prosperous, successful place and increase quality of life for all its residents.
Phase 3: Holistic Economic Development Strategy
The third phase brought together the findings and strategic implications from the first two phases to create the Holistic Economic Development Strategy that will guide the community’s collective actions in the next five years. Strategic recommendations within the plan were driven by the research findings – including both qualitative and quantitative feedback. Examples of best practice programs, policies, and initiatives from communities around the country were included when relevant and appropriate to help inform strategic recommendations and their subsequent implementation.
Phase 4: Implementation Plan
If the Holistic Economic Development Strategy represents “what” the Topeka-Shawnee community will pursue strategically, the Implementation Plan helps define “how” GO Topeka and its partners can effectively and efficiently implement the Strategy’s recommendations. For each of the strategic recommendations, the Implementation Plan identified lead implementers, key partners, potential costs, the appropriate timeline for implementation, and metrics for measuring implementation success.
If you have any questions about Momentum 2022, contact Kayla Bitler.