The St. Louis Vacancy Collaborative (VC) is a coalition of community members, private and non-profit stakeholders, and City agencies committed to reducing vacant property in St. Louis.
The VC helps to coordinate existing vacancy efforts under one umbrella and empowers the public and private sectors to work together toward solutions. We convene committees and project groups to facilitate systemic change, advance new policies, share success stories, and support neighborhood-centric solutions.
Goals of the Vacancy Collaborative
- Build capacity for transparent and equitable development decision-making and reinvestment that is tailored to local conditions.
- Hold private owners of vacant properties accountable through strategic code enforcement and neighborhood-based tools.
- Consistently engage with St. Louis neighborhoods and support efforts to build the capacity of residents to work collectively. Support neighborhood planning and link vacancy efforts, making sure that residents are at the center.
- Continue working toward transparent and consistent vacancy-related processes at the City level. Support continued modernization efforts.
Our Guiding Principles
The following principles are the foundation of the VC’s approach to addressing vacancy:
- Collaborative: Create a culture of collaboration and advocate for alignment and a shared vision whenever possible. Recognize that close coordination and committed leadership across the public and private sectors are essential to address the challenge.
- Transparent: Communicate efforts and provide information in transparent and accessible ways. Evaluate whether new policies and programs might have unintended consequences due to existing structures and systems already in place.
- Data-Driven: Use verifiable data and community stories to inform and evaluate responses to vacancy. Recognize that effective decision-making and a vacancy system that continually adapts and refines policies and programs can only exist with accurate, complete, and current information.
- Community Informed: Support community engagement and community centered solutions. Empower community residents to take action.
- Policy and Systems Oriented: Work for policy and systems level change in addition to individual building and lot interventions. Recognize that the vacancy challenge harms the whole City and the region and that vacancy is often the product of larger forces (e.g., irresponsible investors, detrimental public policies, population decline, sprawl, and a lack of economic and educational opportunities).
- Racial Equity Framework: Apply a racial equity lens to the work, recognizing that the disproportionate impacts of vacancy fall on communities of color in St. Louis.
The Vacancy Collaborative structure includes a steering committee and project groups that coordinate closely:
Find out more about the Project Groups Here
Building on Success: A history of collaborative approaches
to address vacancy in St. Louis
General inquiries, press, and support:
Vacancy Collaborative Director
Vacancy Collaborative Director