The Power of Public Policies: A Closer Look at Akron, OH

Discover how effective public policies have led to positive change and growth in Akron, OH. Learn about specific examples of successful policies and their impact on the city's revitalization, education, workforce development, environmental sustainability, and commu

The Power of Public Policies: A Closer Look at Akron, OH

As a public policy expert, I have had the privilege of closely observing the city of Akron, OH and its various public policies. Located in the heart of Ohio, Akron has faced its fair share of challenges over the years. However, through effective and well-implemented public policies, the city has been able to overcome these challenges and achieve success in various areas.

The Significance of Public Policies

Before delving into specific examples of successful public policies in Akron, it is important to understand the importance of public policies in general. Public policies are essentially guidelines and actions put in place by the government to address societal issues and promote the well-being of its citizens.

These policies can range from economic initiatives to social programs and everything in between. In the case of Akron, public policies have played a crucial role in shaping the city's growth and development. Through strategic planning and implementation, these policies have helped to improve the quality of life for residents and attract businesses and investments to the city.

The Revitalization of Downtown Akron

One of the most notable success stories in Akron is the revitalization of its downtown area. In the early 2000s, downtown Akron was struggling with high vacancy rates and a lack of economic activity. However, through a series of public policies, the city was able to turn things around. One key policy that contributed to this revitalization was the Downtown Redevelopment Plan.

This plan focused on creating a more pedestrian-friendly environment, improving infrastructure, and attracting new businesses and residents to the area. As a result, downtown Akron has seen a significant increase in economic activity, with new restaurants, shops, and residential developments popping up all over. In addition to the Downtown Redevelopment Plan, the city also implemented a tax abatement program to incentivize businesses to invest in downtown Akron. This program offers tax breaks to businesses that create jobs and invest in the area, making it more attractive for companies to set up shop in the city.

Improving Education and Workforce Development

Another area where Akron has seen success through public policies is in education and workforce development. The city has a diverse population, with a large number of low-income families and individuals.

To address this issue, the city has implemented several programs aimed at improving access to education and job training. One such program is the Akron Public Schools' College and Career Academies. These academies offer specialized education and training in various industries, such as healthcare, engineering, and business. By partnering with local businesses, students are able to gain hands-on experience and develop skills that are in high demand in the job market. In addition to education, the city has also focused on workforce development through initiatives like the AkronWorks program. This program provides job training and placement services to individuals looking to enter or re-enter the workforce.

By equipping residents with the necessary skills and resources, Akron has been able to reduce unemployment rates and improve the overall economic well-being of its citizens.

Addressing Environmental Concerns

Akron has also made significant strides in addressing environmental concerns through public policies. The city has a long history of industrial activity, which has resulted in pollution and environmental degradation. However, through initiatives like the Akron Green Initiative, the city has taken steps towards becoming more environmentally sustainable. The Akron Green Initiative focuses on promoting energy efficiency, reducing waste, and increasing green spaces in the city. Through this program, Akron has been able to reduce its carbon footprint and improve air quality.

The city has also implemented a recycling program, which has helped to divert waste from landfills and promote a more sustainable way of living.

Collaboration and Community Engagement

One of the key factors that have contributed to the success of public policies in Akron is collaboration and community engagement. The city has actively involved its residents in the decision-making process, seeking their input and feedback on various policies and initiatives. For example, the Akron Civic Commons project, which aims to revitalize public spaces in the city, involved extensive community engagement to ensure that the project meets the needs and desires of residents. This collaborative approach has not only resulted in successful policies but has also fostered a sense of ownership and pride among residents.


In conclusion, Akron, OH serves as an excellent example of how effective public policies can lead to positive change and growth in a city. Through strategic planning, collaboration, and community engagement, the city has been able to overcome challenges and achieve success in various areas.

As an expert in public policy, I am confident that Akron will continue to thrive and serve as a model for other cities looking to implement successful public policies.

Janine Kuzmin
Janine Kuzmin

Hipster-friendly burrito enthusiast. Unapologetic travel enthusiast. Freelance music expert. Friendly beer trailblazer. Proud zombie ninja.

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