About Designing Better Places

For over 60 years we have developed communities where driving is the prevailing way to get around, and in the process, have unintentionally created places that are unsafe, unhealthy, and unattractive. Designing Better Places explains what makes better places, why it is important to create them, and how we can do it.

Division of Community Assistance

The Division of Community Assistance of the North Carolina Department of Commerce contributes to Community Development activities in North Carolina by providing local communities with a variety About the Division of Community Assistanceof resources and services to help them realize economic prosperity, plan for new growth and address community needs.

We do this by meeting with local leaders to provide customized community development assistance to help with revitalizing downtowns through the North Carolina Main Street Center and the Small Town Main Street Program, creating a community vision and plan for future development with our Office of Community Planning, upgrading infrastructure, fostering entrepreneurship, providing housing opportunities and developing strategies for economic success with Community Development Block Grants. We also provide social and economic support to local entities and non-profits in Appalachia through the Appalachian Regional Commission.  Please see our 2012 Annual Report for more about our work.

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