That is why a construction consultant in the Bay Area will often advise meeting with different local groups, so as to gain a fuller understanding of the different stakes and concerns. To that end, here are six types of groups you should meet with, from your construction consultant in Oakland:
- Local government: Nobody is going to have a better understanding of the different needs, concerns and tensions in a given community than the person who hears all about them as an officer at the monthly city council meetings. Meeting with the local government early on is an easy way to gain understanding of the area, and may give you a leg up with permits, codes and other regulatory needs. You also ought to meet with specific branches of government, such as the local sheriff or the sanitation department.
- Community safety groups: Communities often have neighborhood watch groups and safety committees, and it is now easier than ever for these groups to have effective organizing, influence and outreach thanks to the Internet. Meeting with these groups will give you a clear picture of crime concerns in the area, and will help you stay plugged in to local safety issues.
- Local businesses: Meeting with a local chamber of commerce chapter will show that you care about the economic vitality of the entire community, not just your shiny new development. It will also open the door to business collaborations in the future, which could be great for establishing your project in the community.
- Nonprofits: Local nonprofits can be involved in issues ranging from health and wellness to drug counseling and parental assistance. Meeting with these groups gives you the chance to do some real good in the community, as well as build mutually beneficial partnerships. This can be especially helpful if you are constructing housing for low income or high risk residents.
- Protestors: These days, it is difficult to find a major development in the Bay Area that is not being met with some pushback. Meeting with protestors and activists probably won’t solve everything, but it will at least show that you care, and that you are committed to finding compromise where it is possible.
- Local journalists: Finally, meeting with local journalists is an effective way to both get your project’s name out there and learn about the primary local concerns surrounding your building. Just make sure you are well prepared before meeting with them, as one bad story could have long-term negative effects on your project.