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Regionalism Beyond State Boundaries- a glance into Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, PA made the front page of The New York Times today for its successful efforts to overcome its older industrial legacy. The city which was once in worse condition than most cities in the Mid-West, including Detroit, is now enjoying a low unemployment rate relative to the national average as well as an increase in housing prices. The city has worked hard to diversify its industry and may offer some best practices to help other Mid-West cities overcome the woes of their industrial past. Read the full article Not only does the success of Pittsburgh offer hope to ailing cities, it also supports the case for regional collarboration, a major tenet of the Restoring Prosperity to Ohio effort. Often, when people think of regional collaboration it is limited to state boundaries however this in not necessarily the case.

Steubenville, Ohio, which considers itself the "Burb of the Burgh" is one example of how state boundaries are becoming more porous. Downtown Steubenville is less than 30 miles from the Pittsburgh International Airport and is using its strategic location to purchase advertisements in the Pittsburgh area targeting businesses to relocate in Jefferson County.

Another example of cross-border collaboration is the Cleveland-Pittsburgh-Youngstown network which gives the three cities an opportunity to explore common concerns, share best practices, and identify opportunities for collaboration. One product of this network is the "Tech Belt Initiative" which aims to draw more private and federal dollars into tech-based development. (Read the full article)

As the possibility for multi-state regionalism increases it poses the questions, first; how do you create awareness of potential areas for collaboration and second; how do you create a funding stream for projects the costs one state money while benefitting another state (e.g. if light-rail line is constructed between Steubenville and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania aquires most of the cost while Steubenville receives the benefits)?