Why Downtown Is Important

Economic Development

  • Downtown serves as a good incubator for new small businesses - the success of tomorrow. Strips and malls are often too expensive for new entrepreneurs. Lower rents make downtown a good location.
  • Downtown represents independent businesses which support local families, support local community projects such as teams and schools, keep profits in town (chain stores send profits out of town). It helps reduce sprawl by concentrating activity in one area.
  • Downtown is a major employer. Often when you count the number of jobs in a community, you will find that downtown is the largest employer.
  • Downtown infrastructure is a major public investment. Only healthy businesses in buildings assessed at full value generate taxes that give taxpayers a return on this public investment.
  • Downtown revitalization protects property values in surrounding residential neighborhoods.
  • Downtown rehabilitation work stimulates the local economy. Materials and labor for new commercial construction often come from out of town.

Community Development

  • Downtown is a symbol of community economic health, the partnership between the private and the public sector, local quality of life, local pride, and community history
  • Downtown is the heart of the community, and the site for government, arts, churches, and financial institutions.
  • Downtown is an important community space, where members of all segments of the community can meet equally for parades, speeches and other community events.
  • Downtown can be a tourist attraction, and is the location of a community’s unique businesses and buildings.