Dear Friends, August, 2016
We recently held a Town Hall meeting to share our progress with the stakeholders and citizens, and solicit input for our next steps and future direction. If you were able to attend that meeting, thank you for your time and comments.
The last few years were very successful for Downtown Alive! With your help, we were able to continue to improve the quality of downtown in the following ways:
- Several new businesses were welcomed to the district creating new jobs and opportunities.
- The beautification efforts continued with the addition of new benches, waste receptacles and custom made bicycle racks, fabricated and donated by The Bike Stop.
- Two new pieces of art were added to the Downtown landscape through the “Remnants Restored” Public Art Project in partnership with the Public Art Commission.
- A new brochure entitled “Doing Business in Downtown Blue Springs” was created in cooperation with the City, which highlights the incentive tools available for renovations and improvements.
- With input from Downtown Alive! and the Historic Preservation Commission, the City created three “Downtown Conservation Areas” to help preserve the historic character of our City.
- Our efforts were recognized by the Missouri Main Street Connection. They raised our status from Affiliate to Associate Level, an elevation that normally takes at least 8 years, completed in 4!
There are many tasks from our Action Plans either completed or in the process of being completed in 2016:
- Continue the beautification efforts by adding more benches and bicycle racks in Central Park.
- Installation of four murals designed and created by artists in the Blue Springs High Schools, to showcase our history and heritage. The murals were mounted on buildings within the district, and the project was partially funded with a grant from Truman Heartland Community Foundation.
- We received the “Creating Creative Places” Award for the “Remnants Restored” Public Art Project during the Annual Missouri Main Street Connection Evening of Excellence in July 2016.
- Continue to promote and educate the business and property owners about the various funding opportunities available for façade and building improvements.
Some of the goals discussed at the Town Hall meeting for 2017 and the future include:
- Establishing a Community Improvement District to provide a steady funding source.
- Attracting more retail to the district (Destination Business).
- Creating outdoor (green) gathering and meeting spaces.
We need the help of our “Friends of Downtown Alive!” to continue this progress. Please renew your Friend status for 2016 with a tax deductible contribution. Your donations can be mailed, made on our website by clicking on the “Donate” button on our homepage, or even better, bring them to our monthly “Friends” meeting and see what’s going on. The next Friends Social Hour is September 20th from 6:30 to 7:30 pm at Pizza Shoppe. We need you and your time! Please consider volunteering for one of the four teams or perhaps helping with a specific event. Take a look at our website for more information.
Thank you in advance for joining with us as we build upon our past successes and work toward making Downtown the social, civic and small business heart of Blue Springs!
The Board of Downtown Alive!