Heartland Visioning Video Article

New Heartland Visioning video. Volunteers talk about what the community-wide vision project means to them and how it is helping Topeka and Shawnee County move forward.

NOTO reaches another milestone

NOTO_Studio831North Topeka Arts District (NOTO) held a celebration for donors and volunteers Friday, December 17 at the new, and first, studio to open at 831 North Kansas Avenue. Studio 831, opened by Barbara Waterman-Peters is the first studio space in the art new district. Guests were able to mingle enjoying live music by the High Falutin' String Band, food, wine and artwork.

Vision Partners make Topeka Capital Journal's top local stories of 2010

TopekaGoogle Think Big Topeka and Capital District Project make top two local stories of 2010 for the Topeka Capital Journal. More »

Coverage of Capital District Project Presentation

CDPlogoLast night the Capital District Project volunteers presented a concept of what could be done to help revitalize downtown. See the news reports from the local media.

WIBW_TV      Capital_Journal_COLOR_6-06       ktkaduo      KSNT_Color_Logo

Kansas Children's Discovery Center Moving Forward

KCDC_logo_-_FINAL_12-10
The Kansas Children's Discovery Center spent Monday, February 28 moving in exhibits to the new interactive museum with the help of Frito-Lay. See the CJ Online article for more.

Upgrades To Topeka Facility To Bring Success

HV-logoOne Vision Partner's efforts to make Topeka and Shawnee County unique.

Three-point-one million dollars of additions to the Capitol Federal Natatorium at Hummer State
Park are thought to make a splash.

For the complete story from the WIBW News, click here.

Column: Downtown street width a historic puzzle

Downtown_Looking_Norht_frm_8thPeople looking for ways to make downtown Topeka more customer-friendly have for years mentioned the width of S. Kansas Avenue as a challenge.

For Mike Hall's complete column from the Topeka Capital Journal, click here.

Topeka High on Military Retirees

airshow_WWII_Plane_and_flagsAffordable housing, a relatively low unemployment rate and access to education and health care are just a few reasons why two national military organizations have placed Topeka as the sixth best medium metro area for military retirees.

For the complete article from the Topeka Capital Journal, click here.

Students prepare NOTO center

North Topeka Arts District Logo (NOTO)Plans of a Topeka artist to occupy a studio this week in North Topeka's developing arts district is moving efforts to revitalize the three-block area along N. Kansas Avenue beyond simple imagination.

For the complete article from the Topeka Capital Journal, click here.

Heartland Healthy Neighborhoods

cyclistThe Heartland Healthy Neighborhoods alliance, an outgrowth of the Quality of Life foundation team,  is one of the early successes of the Heartland Visioning process. The goal of this alliance is to make Topeka/Shawnee County one of the healthiest communities in the country.  Nancy Johnson, executive director of the Community Resources Council, and Joe Hodgson, fitness director for the Topeka YMCA, lead this group. Johnson is also a co-chair of the Quality of Life foundation team.

Members of the group learned of Score Card, a program offered by Kansas State University’s extension service. In 2008 the program, which encourages children to participate in an exercise program 60 minutes a day five days a week, had only 25 participants.  This number increased to 400 during the summer of 2009, when Heartland Healthy Neighborhoods members, who have connections throughout the community, got more area children to participate.

In addition to Score Card, Heartland Healthy Neighborhoods has launched more initiatives, including Complete Streets, part of a national movement to make city streets more accessible to bicyclists, walkers and the disabled using simple, inexpensive design elements to incorporate into future street improvement projects.

Kiplinger Article on Topeka

In the July, 2010 edition of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine, Topeka was recognized as one of the "Top Ten Cities for the Next Decade." This recognition is a great summmary of what is happening in the community—civic growth, business growth and an energetic focus on the future.

Kiplinger's Personal Finance unveiled their Top Ten Cities for the Next Decade list, on which Topeka ranked tenth in the nation, but even more telling of the city's success are some of the statistics they used to determine their rankings. Research conducted by Kiplinger and the Martin Prosperity Institute, ranked Topeka 17th in the nation, and first among Kiplinger's top ten cities, in its percentage of workforce in the "Creative Class."

The study puts 37% of Topeka’s working population with jobs in the creative class, which includes scientists, engineers, educators, writers, artists, entertainers and others who "inject both economic and cultural vitality into a city and help make it a vibrant place to live," according to the magazine.

The magazine's research also listed Topeka as 26th in the nation, and first among Kiplinger's top ten cities, in cost of living. The index,  in which average cost of living is a score of 100, gives Topeka a score of 88. Cost of living factors in several aspects, from prices of housing to commodities such as gas and groceries.

"While this is an incredible honor and wonderful news, it comes as no surprise to us at all. We've long touted Topeka as an innovative,  vibrant community, and it's fantastic to see others outside the city recognizing it," said Doug Kinsinger, president and CEO of the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce. "A lot of that credit is due to the highly-involved organizations within the Topeka and Shawnee County community, as well as the fantastic corporations who set up here."

A podcast accompanying the Kiplinger's story talks about how the city selection process was conducted, and how the top ten communities aren't simply doing the right things now, but the things that will keep them successful in the future. The kind of factors they looked at included if a city had a "low barrier of entry," where people felt it was easy to get involved and fit in; if the community had interesting, creative, innovative things happening within it; and collaboration between local government, business and educational organizations.

"A lot of these places that we discovered among our top places, they all have this grassroots, cooperative effort that is noticeably lacking in other places," Senior Editor Bob Frick says in the podcast.

On Kiplinger's website, each of the top ten cities is profiled, with a video accompanying each city. In its first day on the site, Topeka"s video proved surprisingly popular.

"On Wednesday, the day the Best Cities package launched on Kiplinger.com, Topeka’s video had 4,063 plays. It surpassed the number of video plays for Austin, the number one city on the list," said Kathryn Walson, the Kiplinger’s author who wrote about Topeka.

Full article here: http://www.kiplinger.com/magazine/archives/best-cities-2010-topeka-kan.html#ixzz14psYdvDJ

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