America’s Metros Report

America’s Metro Regions Take Center Stage: 8 Reasons Why

A Report by Citistates Group Principals Neal Peirce, Curtis Johnson and Farley Peters

Metro regions have been a focus of Citistates Group projects for over 20 years.  The group’s 1993 book, Citistates, set the groundwork for today’s mounting interest in metro regions and their potential.

But where do the regions stand today?  What can be their full contribution to America’s 20th century governance and progress across economic, social and environmental fronts?  A group of distinguished thought leaders and operational veterans of metropolitan affairs were assembled at the Rockefeller Brothers Pocantico Conference Center in October 2011 to focus on that very issue.

And the sessions provided a surprise.  A first topic had been state governments’ frequent indifference to, or legal obstacles to, clear and effective regional governance.  Those issues haven’t disappeared – and still need attention.  But the Pocantico conferees were excited by the new coalitions and initiatives, the energy bubbling up from the metro regions themselves, and their emergence as significant players not only in the United States but on the world stage.

The report outlines eight top current trends – and emerging opportunities – for regions to define their strengths, undergird their futures, and contribute the U.S. progress.

Regions Take Center Stage:

Reason 1 – Economics Now Reign
Reason 2 – Smart Growth are Regions’ New Dollars and Sense
Reason 3 – Regions are on their Own
Reason 4 – Regions are Getting Down to Business
Reason 5 – But Business Means More Than Business
Reason 6 – States are Moving from Paternalism to Partnership
Reason 7 – There’s a New Federal Role
Reason 8 – Its All About Outcomes here

Download the PDF report

As is the case with all materials resulting from meetings held at the Pocantico Conference Center, the views expressed in these commentaries are not necessarily those of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund., its trustees, or its staff.