Sustainable engagement occurs when communities sense that their input plays an important role in the planning and design process. Demonstrating that community voices were heard at prior meetings and how, where and when their feedback will make an impact in the design process creates a positive feedback loop that fosters further involvement and continued public support.
In meetings for the East Side Coastal Resiliency Project, a portion of the BIG U proposal for lower Manhattan, the project team begins each meeting with a recap of community feedback from the prior meeting. Reviewing prior input and integrating public comments into current discussions shows attendees the value of their thoughts in shaping project development.
A monthly newsletter is a simple way of keeping the community informed and engaged between meetings. In Meadowlands, NJ, the Project Team emails and posts monthly newsletters to build a resilience knowledge base among their stakeholders on the many complex aspects of these design concepts and the process towards building them.