Skip to main content

July 21, 2023


Developing a Regenerative Placemaking Framework, Part 2

by Alexandra J Tohme

A toolkit for realizing opportunity and managing risk

Tanya Watts, Director of Neighborhood Affairs at our PHX-JAX Arts + Innovation District, leading community engagement activities to learn from locals on aspirations and needs for their city.

What is the approach?

At Future of Cities we believe Regenerative Placemaking is the transformative approach to development for our cities and the built environment to change course and maximize returns and impact.

For this reason, we are developing a unique Framework rooted in three pillars that catalyze the development process: To first understand the local community, nature and culture in the area in which you work. Then, work to engage, empower and uplift the talent, knowledge, skills, design, ecology and activations within these pillars, to co-create solutions.

This is the foundation for equitable and regenerative development.

Art installations at PHX-JAX

If we start with humility, an opening arises to learn about bountiful opportunities from the local community, nature and culture. Our FOC methodology provides strategies and outreach guides to learn about your “place” of operation, and unlock the vast socio-economic benefits that can be reached.

When it comes to risk management, we have learned that projects have much less control than one realizes, and a simple mismanagement could threaten its success. Respecting and honoring this will actually empower you, as a project manager or investor — to realize the incredible power and capability that local communities, nature, and cultures have to elevate your investment and impact.

Founder and CEO of Cho Ventures, Tony Cho

Our toolkit tackles policy challenges such as how to coordinate with civil society, and engage community leaders and groups in decision-making and project design. We also promote creating jobs in the locality, providing education on innovative nature-based solutions, and engaging youth, to name a few.

We showcase examples that demonstrate lessons learned, and how it can be implemented in different settings.

Rather than starting at the point of problems, Future of Cities is focusing on identifying opportunities within any areaAs a global community we’ve been looking at and trying to solve “problems” for decades, and they just end up repeating themselves.

We believe in the great knowledge, solutions and growth found in local communities, ecosystems, and cultures. The possibilities reveal themselves when you unlock this secret sauce: Moreover, the risks are diminished, and resiliency against unforeseen shocks are built in.


Become a Regenerative Placemaker and join in co-creating the future of cities with us as we work together towards a more regenerative future.

Subscribe to our newsletter at to get involved, email me at: and follow us on Instagram.

Future Of Cities

Alexandra J Tohme — Research & Partnership Manager