In 2011, a group of dedicated neighbors came together to change decades of disinvestment in the neighborhood. In November of that year, five of them, became the founding board of the Northeast Investment Cooperative, a first-of-its-kind in the U.S. cooperative engaged in buying and developing real estate.
Neighbors got together to buy vacant buildings. Now they’re renting to bakers and brewers.
NEIC created a structure where any Minnesota resident could join the co-op for $1,000, and invest more through the purchase of different classes of nonvoting stock. The group began spreading the word to prospective members, and started looking for a building to buy.
Though the model is new and small, it holds outsize potential for the many neighborhoods whose downtowns are controlled by faraway landlords or retail chains.