Like other parts of the Northern Forest, many Adirondack communities struggle to maintain strong schools, a robust workforce, and vital civic institutions. The challenges these communities face are economic and demographic, but the solution is simple: to attract and retain more young people to live in these communities.
In February 2021, the Center released Attracting New Residents to the Adirondacks: A Strategy for the Adirondack Park and its Communities. Download the full strategy.
The strategy identifies opportunities for the Adirondack region to address these challenges and attract new residents by building on regional and community strengths and capitalizing on existing assets. With millions of annual visitors and people who deeply love this region, the Adirondacks is perfectly positioned to attract new residents who are looking for a home that aligns with their values, presents opportunity, and provides incredible quality of life.
The strategy is a guide for community leaders, nonprofits, and public entities interested in creating the conditions that may help attract a new generation of residents to the Adirondacks and bring back young people who have left. Hundreds of voices contributed to this document through individual interviews, online surveys, focus groups, and the annual Common Ground Alliance forum.
The Center is beginning to implement the strategy. The first steps are to establish partnerships with communities and to identify the levers that can have the most impact on this work.
We will need broad community engagement to succeed in this work. If you would like to be part of implementing this strategy – or hearing updates along the way – please email Adirondack Program Manager Leslie Karasin.
Image from the report: A map showing school district enrollment changes from 2008-2018 in the Adirondacks. Information from the National Center for Education Statistics: https://nces.ed.gov/ccd/elsi/