Community Improvement, Capacity Building

Community Design Collaborative of Philadelphia

  • Philadelphia, PA
  • http://www.cdesignc.org

Mission Statement

The Collaborative is committed to the belief that good design matters in every community and, moreover, that good design can be used as a tool to achieve community revitalization goals, such as promoting economic development or creating healthy public spaces. Over its 24-year history, the Collaborative has facilitated more than 500 service grants for local nonprofit organizations.

Main Programs

  1. Design Grants
  2. rStore
  3. Infill Philadelphia
Service Areas

Self-reported

Pennsylvania

The Collaborative serves nonprofit clients in Philadelphia, Bucks, Delaware, Chester, Montgomery Counties of Pennsylvania and Camden County, New Jersey.

ruling year

1996

Principal Officer

Self-reported

Elizabeth Miller

Keywords

Self-reported

community design, architecture, planning, urban design, landscape, development

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Also Known As

Community Design Collaborative

EIN

23-2835435

 Number

5658162562

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Community, Neighborhood Development, Improvement (S20)

Visual Arts Organizations (A40)

Other Housing, Shelter N.E.C. (L99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

In 2014, the Collaborative and its volunteers completed 24 Design Grant projects which provided pro bono architectural services at an aggregate value of $752,846.

The Collaborative completed its most ambitious Infill Philadelphia initiative, Soak It Up!, which it conducted in partnership with the Philadelphia Water Department and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The 18-month initiative addressed a key revitalization issue: green infrastructure to manage stormwater runoff and prevent water pollution.

The Collaborative also continued to disseminate its achievements directly to over 4,300 individuals, including non-profit leaders, public sector officials, design professionals, community development specialists, and urban enthusiasts through regular blog posts, e-blasts, and the Design Matters Digest newsletter.

Lastly, through the Collaborative’s design charrettes, design professionals have gained valuable insight into the design challenges facing neighborhoods across the city. In 2014, the Collaborative held a Reactivating Vacant Schools Design Charrette in partnership with the Office of the Deputy Mayor of Philadelphia that aimed to initiate long-term planning by the community for two recently-shuttered Philly schools. The charrette gained considerable media attention for the organization, with coverage by flyingkitemedia.com and WHYY.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Design Grants

The Service Grant Program awards up to 30 grants of preliminary design services to nonprofit organizations each year.  Service grants respond to the individual needs of each nonprofit grantee, providing between $15,000 and $40,000 in
donated preliminary design services.

Category

Neighborhood Revitalization

Population(s) Served

None

None

None

Budget

Program 2

rStore

rStore provides advisory and preliminary design services to
nonprofit organizations and public agencies engaged in revitalizing
Philadelphia’s commercial corridors. rStore offers design consultations,
training workshops, and technical assistance to support commercial corridor
funding, policy, and reinvestment.

Category

Small & Minority Business Development Programs

Population(s) Served

None

None

None

Budget

Program 3

Infill Philadelphia

Infill Philadelphia explores design strategies for infill development in older urban neighborhoods. Each phase features a theme, an intermediary partner, three relevant design projects, and public events. The 2012-13 theme was Infill Philadelphia: Soak It Up!, exploring green approaches to stormwater management infrastructure. Past themes were affordable housing, commercial corridors, food access, and
industrial sites. A future theme is being developed in 2014, for public launch either later this year or in 2015.

Category

Neighborhood Revitalization

Population(s) Served

None

None

None

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    The Collaborative's goals are to provide pro bono preliminary design services to nonprofits and neighborhood organizations in the Philadlephia region; offer unique volunteer opportunities for design professionals; and raise awareness about the importance of design in community revitalization.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    The Collaborative's strategies are to organize multidisciplinary teams of volunteer design professionals to create preliminary designs and plans for neighborhood organizations, vetted through peer review at the mid- and endpoints of the process; engage community members as collaborator's in the design process; provide design services to strengthen Philadelphia's commercial corridors, through facade improvements and recognition of best practices; and organize the Infill Philadelphia initiative to explore the role of design in meeting specific challenges in urban areas, such as affordable housing, food security, industrial reuse, early childhood development as it relates to play space, and stormwater management.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    The Collaborative's core asset is its corps of 1,200 design professionals who have signed up to provide volunteer services; its extensive network among community development organizations and neighborhood-based civic organizations; and its relationships with public agencies, funders, and other partners to move projects forward. Finally, its experienced staff includes architects, communications professionals, and nonprofit managers.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Number of hours of pro bono professional services donated
    Value of pro bono services leveraged
    Number of service grants organized
    Number of charrettes completed
    Number of rStore projects completed
    Infill Philadelphia activities conducted
    Number of media mentions as measure of public outreach and education
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    In 2014, the Collaborative had the following results:
    Hours of pro bono professional services donated: 5,702
    Value of pro bono services: $752,846
    Number of service grants completed: 24
    Number of charrettes organized: 1
    Media placements: over 100
Service Areas

Self-reported

Pennsylvania

The Collaborative serves nonprofit clients in Philadelphia, Bucks, Delaware, Chester, Montgomery Counties of Pennsylvania and Camden County, New Jersey.

Social Media

Blog

Funding Needs

The Collaborative has a diverse mix of funding sources, including foundation grants, government grants and contracts, corporate sponsorships, and individual gifts. Unrestricted gifts enable the Collaborative to provide design services to organizations that are not eligible for services funded by the public contracts.

Videos

External Reviews

Source: greatnonprofits.org

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

COMMUNITY DESIGN COLLABORATIVE OF PHILADELPHIA
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Community Design Collaborative of Philadelphia

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2014
  • Board Chair, Board Co-Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Elizabeth Miller

BIO

Beth Miller has served as the Executive Director of the Community Design Collaborative in Philadelphia since 2001. Her previous work with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Fairmount Ventures, and Resource Management Plus has given her a strong grounding in preservation, community development, and nonprofit management issues. Beth holds a Master's degree in Government Administration from the Fels School of Government at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor's degree in the Growth and Structure of Cities from Bryn Mawr College.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Darrick Mix

Duane Morris LLP

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?