At the end of 2016, DSI conducted a needs assessment of our downtown district business owners so that we could set priorities as an organization for the coming year. A majority indicated that they were optimistic heading into the new year. Respondents indicated their 2017 priorities as filling vacancies, permanent directional signage, launching a new district brand and educational campaign, a parking app, adding family-friendly amenities to the Old State Capitol Plaza and determining a collective vision for the next 10-15 years.
Who Responded to the Survey
(“Other” consisted of: non-profits, hotels, property managers, etc.)
Morale Going into 2017
What were your best months in 2016?
What were your worst months in 2016?
Was the year “normal” as far as sales?
The majority of businesses were split between lower sales than normal and maintaining sales levels compared to 2015, with a few businesses that expanded their footprint or amended their offerings seeing a gain.
What DSI activities in 2016 helped your bottom line?
- Old Capitol Holiday Walks
- Publicizing businesses in all communication channels
- Farmers Market
- Work to decrease panhandling annoyances
2017 Priorities for DSI
What are some other ideas to help downtown grow?
Community Music School and Performance Venue; changing all parking meters to 2 hour meters; changing parallel parking back to diagonal; guaranteed water mains sized to supply required sprinkler systems; slow down the traffic; local talent night on the Plaza; vacant Peases building get national retailer like Crate and Barrel or IKEA; movie theater; additional shopping (women’s trendy clothing, shoes and kids); healthy eating restaurant; dog park; new park/green space with playground and bandshell close to downtown (Y-Block); pull more workers from medical district by promoting labs and doctors to set up in downtown spaces; launch a moving billboard on a downtown shuttle; incentives for start-up businesses; down payment assistance and/or grants to encourage purchase of downtown condo space.