The City of Bakersfield and other partners are currently working on a $30 million grant application for their Southeast Strong project with the goal of impacting the Southeast community of Bakersfield.
The Southeast Strong project was created to bridge previous community-proposed projects through Bakersfield’s Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) plan and will apply those ideas toward the TCC Round 5 grant application.
The TCC grant is an opportunity to bring transformative change to the historically disadvantaged community of Southeast Bakersfield and community engagement will play a critical role in order to see the projects to fruition.
“Right now we’re in a process where we have identified through our planning grant and through some other efforts with our stakeholder group 22 products that we’re considering for the application,” stated Jason Cater, the Economic and Community Development Manager with the City of Bakersfield. “We’re in the middle of a prioritization process where we’re asking residents for their input and their votes on what we should prioritize.”
The city has provided an online outreach survey where residents can provide their input on which projects should be at the forefront of the application process. The survey is set to close on April 30, 2023.
TCC is part of the California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-And-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment – particularly in disadvantaged communities.
For the City of Bakersfield, the communities that are targeted are in Southeast Bakersfield. Under TCC, the City of Bakersfield, working with residents and other community partners, will explore ideas and opportunities for neighborhood-level improvements with equitable housing and neighborhood development, mobility and urban greening, workforce development and economic opportunities, and transformative elements.
“We plan to strategize with the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program (AHSC) to build healthier communities that protect the environment by increasing the supply of affordable places to live near jobs, stores, transit, and other daily needs,” the Bakersfield TCC website states. By advancing AHSC projects, we can reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by positioning these projects in opportune areas that will make it easier for residents to get out of their cars and walk, bike, or take public transit.”
Additionally, the Bakersfield TCC website provides an interactive map that depicts the TCC Round 4 & 5 Project areas. In 2022, the TCC Round 4 focus area (green) targeted Bakersfield’s Downtown core and portions of historic neighborhoods to the east and south commonly known as Old Town Kern (OTK), Oleander/Sunset, and Lakeview/MLK Jr. TCC Round 5 (orange) will focus on Bakersfield’s Southeast area: MLK Jr., OTK, and Casa Loma.