The Chattanooga area joins the Coalition of Hip Hideaways

As a way to continue its mission of responsible growth for the tri-state Chattanooga region, Thrive Regional Partnership has joined national partners to be a part of the Coalition of Hip Hideaways.

A collage of four photos — from left to right: a man mountain biking in creek-like area, a white house on the side of the mountain with green trees, a view of a city, and folks lining up on the side of a beach.

What can happen when different regions of the nation join forces?

Photo provided by Coalition of Hip Hideaways

The Greater Chattanooga area, with the help of local organization Thrive Regional Partnership, recently joined three other regions to launch the Coalition of Hip Hideaways.

This initiative connects our tri-state region (Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia, and Northeast Alabama) to other regions across the nation — from Colorado Springs and Northwest Arkansas to Missoula, MT with the common goal of responsible growth.

Thrive’s Chief Communication Officer Rhett Bentley said Hip Hideaways is a livability campaign that focuses on a region’s key industries (think: manufacturing in Chattanooga) to elevate the different scenes within an area + show all facets of livability.

“In one way this campaign is meant to highlight everything that this region offers to someone who might consider moving here,” she said. “But in another way, I think it’s meant to inspire the planners and decision-makers to keep up this work.”

Downtown Cleveland, TN showing its town square.

Hip Hideaways also focuses on the smaller areas of the Greater Chattanooga region like nearby Cleveland.

Photo by Cleveland Bradley County Chamber of Commerce via Thrive Regional Partnership

Hip Hideaways was championed by leaders in Northwest Arkansas + will build on the area’s Life Works Here plan. Bentley said that Chattanooga’s involvement was due to personal relationships being built since November of 2022 when Thrive representatives went to Bentonville, AR to learn about the city’s approaches on growth.

These regions all share the qualities of a larger metro area with booming outdoors, social, and economic scenes while acting as smaller metros. The cohort will work as a partnership for leaders and planners to gather quarterly and discuss best practices for awareness + positioning these areas for further success.

Two girls walking on a sidewalk holding shopping bags in a city's downtown area.

From leading industries to urban life, all Hip Hideaways are chosen for the lives they can offer residents.

Photo by Catoosa County Chamber of Commerce via Thrive Regional Partnership

Bentley also spoke on how small communities can sometimes be weary of development by recalling a quote from Harvard professor Rosabeth Moss Kanter — “Change is disturbing when it is done to us, exhilarating when it is done by us.”

She said a goal of Hip Hideaways is to get ahead of the growth that is already happening and steer it in a way that keeps the core identity of these regions intact + that being a part of the conversation will help achieve this.

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