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Wright State minds help to shape Co-op through Capstone Project

Clifton Crafthouse Co-op is intentionally creating space based on the needs of the surrounding communities. Piper Fernwey, Clifton Crafthouse Co-op Board President & Project Coordinator, partnered with Jackie Anderson and Madeline Gresham, co-authors of a preliminary feasibility study on affordable artist housing, to advise four MPA (Masters of Public Administration) students from Wright State University to update and expand their original study from 2013.

With a focus on enlarging the target audience to better represent the multiple project components and populations the Clifton Crafthouse Co-op hopes to serve, this project will focus on specific market segments, and conduct location specific surveys and focus groups. The reach of this project will extend to a broader scope of communities including parts of Dayton, Yellow Springs, and Springfield, and will include input from business owners, organizations, and even food business owners.

"We're so grateful to have these amazing students dedicate their capstone research to identifying the needs of the communities the Clifton Crafthouse Co-op is designed to serve," Fernwey says. "So much of our project was inspired and designed based on Jackie and Madeline's original study and other needs assessments, but it's amazing to be able to get survey and focus group data from potential users of each of our spaces - affordable artist housing, community space for classes and workshops, and shared commercial kitchen. With this data we can update the plans for the Co-op - in terms of building design, programming, etc. - and shift to be able to better meet the needs of our community."

The success of the project is largely dependent upon its reflection of the input gathered through this study. "With information on what each of these stakeholder groups need," Fernwey adds, "we can update plans for the Co-op to better address the needs of the community."

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