Next Steps for Downtown – A Process to Invigorate Downtown Districts

NEXTSTEPS for downtown® is a snapshot in time and a guide for the future.  Downtown districts sometimes need a shot-in-the-arm; fresh ideas to either jump start a comprehensive planning process or reaffirm and invigorate past planning efforts.

NEXTSTEPS provides ideas and solutions within approximately 60 days of the initial site visit by the team of downtown experts.   The toolkit is designed to be used immediately; its place is not on a shelf.  Interactive worksheets permit community leaders to accept, reject or modify ideas and recommendations.   Appropriate strategies can then be ranked and assigned to stakeholders to produce tangible results.

Imagine fresh new ideas and strategies for downtown in 60 days.  NEXTSTEPS is the answer.

As part of the NEXTSTEPS process, the Clearzoning (CZ) team will consider how the following affect the quality of downtown:

  • Signage: How are businesses communicating to the public? What do the signs say about the downtown environment?
  • Street Lighting: Is the downtown well-lit, safe and appealing?
  • Window Displays: What are shoppers’ first impressions of downtown businesses?
  • Connectivity: How are neighborhoods connected to downtown?
  • Downtown Sidewalks: What is the quality of sidewalks? How are the downtown sidewalks functioning?
  • Streetscape Continuity: How does the streetscape enhance or deter pedestrian movement along downtown streets?
  • Maintenance of the Public Realm: How well-maintained are public spaces? What private spaces function as public spaces?

Following the assessment, CZ provides findings to the community along with realistic action items to guide future improvements.  This includes a wealth of best practices that show what is working in other communities.  The end product is a realistic snapshot of downtown today and action strategies for the future.

CZ also offers related services geared towards downtown issues that can be addressed in today’s economic climate including:

Sign Ordinance Evaluation: Is your downtown sign ordinance encouraging creative, attractive signage that makes a positive contribution to your downtown?

Zoning Ordinance Evaluation: How does your zoning ordinance meet the needs of those who want to work, live and play in your downtown?

Market Snapshot: How is your downtown positioned in the current economy? What can you do today to make improvements?

Parking & Traffic Assessments: Is your downtown parking making the best use of the space you have? How can small projects improve traffic flow through your downtown?

Contact us for more information. 866-271-9663

Next Steps For Downtown Consulting Service