Sara Joy Proppe, Founder

Sara Joy has a passion for cities, stories, and the Church. She loves to imagine how churches can be active and faithful participants in city planning and development in order to bring hope and redemption to the setting of our stories. She speaks and writes for a variety of audiences on this topic. She currently works full time as a Project Manager in commercial real estate development in Minneapolis, where she oversees mixed-use and historic rehab developments. She serves on the Executive Board for the Congress for New Urbanism - Members Christian Caucus. She is also the co-chair for the Urban Land Institute Minnesota's Young Leaders Executive Committee.

Sara Joy holds a B.A. in English Literature and a Masters in Community & Regional Planning. She loves to cook, garden, and bike around town. She shows her Texas roots with many aptly-placed y'alls in her conversations.

Based in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, there is a team of local organizers and supporters for Proximity Project. They work in industries such as affordable housing development, economic development, real estate brokerage, urban planning and academic research. Together they dream about how to change the Twin Cities through encouraging faithful presence and good design in their churches and neighborhoods.

Speaking & Writing Engagements


The Role of the Church in Neighborhood Design   |   Workshop, Inhabit Conference, Seattle, WA

Designing for All Ages  |  Presenter, Strong Talk for Strong Towns

The Isolation of Aging in an Auto-Oriented Place”  |  Author, Humane Pursuits

Your Highway ABC Book”  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog


Give Me Liberty or Give Me Parking!  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog

Cultivating Imagination”  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog

Learning Virtue Through Public Transit”  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog

Bicycles, Faith, & Equity Workshop   |  Host & Organizer, Twin Cities Minnesota

How (and why) to Make Your Church Bike-Friendly”  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog

Taking the Long View”  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog

"Sit on It"  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog


A Place to Sit: How can a park bench and a parish shape our neighborhoods?  |  Workshop, Inhabit Conference, Seattle, WA

Loving Your Neighbor thru the Built Environment  |  Presentation at Jacob's Well, Minneapolis     

"What do churches have to do with urban planning?"  |  Author, Strong Towns Blog


God at Work  |  Presentation at First Covenant Church, Minneapolis                                                 

ZipCode Calling Conference: Christians Engaging the Built Environment    |  Host & Organizer, Twin Cities

“Building Cairns in the City” in Comment Magazine  |  Author                                                                    

A Call to Membership: Rootedness and Memory in the Built Environment  |  Presentation at L'Abri - Rochester, MN   

Engaging the Church in City Planning  |  Presentation at Strong Towns National Gathering               

"Making Space for Millennials" Barna Group Report   |  Contributor


Seeking the Welfare of the City  |  Presentation at CityLife Church, Saint Paul