Project Cities releases first impact report, measuring five years of community partnerships

Since its start in 2017, Project Cities has partnered with four local communities, engaged 38 interdisciplinary faculty members, and facilitated over 75 high-impact projects with over 1,000 undergraduate and graduate students. As we look back on a transformative five years and celebrate our recent President’s Medal for Social Embeddedness, Project Cities is excited to announce the release of its first Impact Report.

“It has been an exciting and rewarding five years of Project Cities at Arizona State University. As a new member to the team this past year, I was immediately impressed by the high caliber of student projects and impact of the program within our local communities”

Julia Colbert, Program Manager, Project Cities

The report documents the impacts of the program, including Project Cities’ advancement of Sustainable Development Goals, project highlights from each community partnership, and messages from leadership.

Read the full summary report here

City of Peoria

CMN 520 students visit City of Peoria Municipal Operations Center, Fall 2021
  • Spring 2022 Fine Glass Recycling project led to a new cost-sharing agreement with the Phoenix Municipal Recycling Facility to purchase new equipment for processing fine glass into a viable economy.
  • Fall 2021 Public Transit & Recycling project informed the City’s redevelopment of the website as well as short informational videos to encourage transit ridership.
  • The Fall 2019 Water Conservation Practices project led to education and awareness campaigns for Peoria’s residents.


Town of Clarkdale

PUP 580 students take walking tour of Clarkdale’s downtown, Spring 2020
  • Fall 2019 and Spring 2020 Downtown Business Revitalization project provided the Town with much-needed guidance on its downtown redevelopment and tourism efforts. Many of the recommended elements have been adapted to the Town’s strategic plan.
  • Multi-semester Smart Town project provided recommendations for the Town to adapt Wi-Fi connectivity in its Selna-Mongini Park and Clubhouse.


Student Maggie Dellow presents her final findings to City of Apache Junction officials, Spring 2019

City of Apache Junction

  • The Spring 2019 Mobile Home Park Transition Plan project informed a larger effort for the City to revisit their codes and redevelopment plans for a variety of housing types.
  • The Fall 2017 Off-Leash Dog Park project reinvigorated the City’s dog park project. Key student recommendations informed the dog park site selection, amenities, and funding strategies. The Dutchman Dog Park opened in Spring 2022 with a “Leash Cutting” ceremony.


City of Glendale

ERM 432/532 students visit City of Glendale Materials Recovery Facility, Fall 2019
  • The Fall 2019 Recycling Program Enhancement project informed efforts to revitalize Glendale’s recycling program following the market crash for recyclable materials.
  • The Spring 2019 Chemical Storage Tanks Management Plan project provided the City with best management practices for developing an operations and maintenance program to the City’s Above Ground Storage Tank (AST) plan.

Looking ahead

“We’re excited to contemplate what Project Cities will accomplish in the next five years and look forward to empowering more students to work with additional communities on the increasing array of challenges facing Arizona...” 

Anne Reichman, Director, Sustainable Cities Network and Project Cities

As we reflect on the last five years, we are excited to look to the future and continue to leverage university expertise and student inspiration to address pressing challenges in Arizona communities.  

Project Cities is a member of the Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Communities Network (EPIC-N) and is administered by ASU’s Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory and the Sustainable Cities Network. Stay up to date with Project Cities and the Sustainable Cities Network by following us on social media or subscribing to our newsletter