GOOD magazine ranked New Orleans 7th in its index of most inspiring cities ... and NPN, The Trumpet and Capacity College received special recognition of our work. Pretty awesome. See the story below.
New Orleans, United States
The Crescent City fights for its soul
by Kezia Kamenetz
With Louisiana now hot on the heels of Los Angeles as a hub for film production and companies like Kickboard and TurboSquid representing the “Silicon Bayou” tech economy, New Orleans is still blossoming. The city hosted its third international art biennial this fall, alongside a local film festival, fringe theater festival, and comedy festival, which all continue to grow larger each year. Of course, not everyone is happy with the attention. Often transient movie industryworkers have been blamed for rapidly increasing rents citywide. Staggering statistics aboutpervasive racial inequalities put a damper on rosy economic outlooks. Noise ordinances, cultural misunderstanding, and appropriation put many locals on the offense, sparking heated debate over gentrification, charter schools, and the effects of outside influence on the city’s soul. And yet, the looming vulnerability of New Orleans’ coastal environment continues to stimulate this dynamic crescent of creative self-expression and heart-centered resiliency.
Hub for Progress
Entrepreneurship is ripe in New Orleans, driven in large part by programs like Idea Village. An incubator, financial support network, and mentor organization for more than 3,000 entrepreneurs, the Village served as the main sponsor of New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, which boasted more than 5,000 participants. This enthusiasm for new, homegrown ideas has created a fertile environment for organizations like PowerMoves NOLA, which serves minority entrepreneurs, and the New Orleans Startup Fund, which offers investment to early-stage companies throughout the New Orleans region.
Local government is slowly improving its responsiveness to citizens’ needs. Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration has made headway by making city data, like the comprehensive 2014 Blight Reduction Report, readily available online. Organizations like the Neighborhood Partnership Network are also working to stimulate and support the community, producing the bi-monthly Trumpet, the city’s only community-run newspaper, and running the Capacity College, a series of educational opportunities for neighborhood groups to expand their reach.
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