Main Street Makes History with PBID (7.18.2012)
Main Street Makes History with
Formation of New Business
A Message from Our Executive Director:
It’s an exciting time for Richmond Main Street. Downtown property owners and the City Council showed their support for the revitalization of Downtown on Tuesday, July 17, 2012, by approving the formation of the Downtown Richmond Property and Business Improvement District (DRPBID)—the first improvement district in the City of Richmond.
As we embark on implementing the new DRPBID, we are thrilled to have accomplished something some thought was virtually impossible to do—engage a group of property and business owners to support the revitalization efforts of Downtown. Not only are these stakeholders willing to get involved, they understand the importance of protecting their investments and are willing to financially support the effort. Business improvement districts are a proven revitalization tool for downtown districts throughout the country (just look at Oakland’s Temescal district, Downtown Berkeley, and Fruitvale).
The Downtown Richmond PBID will build on the momentum and investments already made in Downtown such as the new, beautiful streetscape on Macdonald Avenue and plaza on Nevin Avenue implemented by the former Redevelopment Agency and the newly renovated East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, which has brought a state of the art performing arts institution to Downtown. Ultimately, the DRPBID will create lasting results, making Downtown more economically viable, attractive, and safe.
Thus far this year, Richmond Main Street has experienced great success with our signature activities: promoting the arts and Downtown with Music on the Main and Art In Windows; developing job skills through the 5th Annual Summer Youth Entrepreneur Program; and, with the support of West County HEAL, increasing access to healthy foods and fitness opportunities with Healthy Village Farm Stand and free, bi-weekly Zumba classes. Additionally, we accomplished a long-standing goal of establishing a full-scale, weekly certified Farmers’ Market downtown. Through these events and many others, we have attracted more people downtown than ever before and we only expect this trend to continue.
As the executive director for Richmond Main Street, I have the distinct pleasure to work with a diverse group of stakeholders who support our work, including residents, business owners, city government officials, and community-based organizations. I am delighted to work with a group of committed, hard-working staff, board members, and volunteers who have helped RMSI attain remarkable achievements, such as our Neighborhood Ambassador Program, which has been recognized locally and nationally for the remarkable positive difference it has made in keeping Downtown clean and safe.
Richmond Main Street is growing by leaps and bounds. We have a bright future ahead and expect to continue to be the catalyst for positive change Downtown. We invite everyone to join our efforts building on this momentum as we implement the DRPBID that will provide a strong public/private partnership to revitalize Downtown.