Downtown Digest News

Downtown Digest provides brief summaries of essential information from Downtown Idea Exchange newsletter.

For email delivery of Downtown Digest, SIGN UP NOW. It’s free.

For in-depth, expanded coverage, subscribe to Downtown Idea Exchange.

Downtown Replaces Decades-Old Signs

May 26, 2022
In downtown Napa, CA, wayfinding signs are fading and more than two decades old. “They have patched-over fonts, different colors, and incorrect information,” says Economic Development Manager Neal Harrison. “A good example of that is the visitor center moved from Main Street to First Street and the signage hasn’t moved with it.” Napa’s experience with…Continue reading


Getting Workers Back Downtown

April 28, 2022
As the severity of COVID-19 fades, American life has begun to return to normal. Americans are going to restaurants, movies, concerts, and sporting events. They’re shopping and vacationing. But they aren’t going back to offices. To better understand downtown workers’ attitudes toward work and the city center, the Greater Des Moines Partnership commissioned a survey…Continue reading


City Considers Form-Based Code Downtown

March 31, 2022
Northampton, MA. Northampton, MA, is working through an overhaul of zoning rules that would bring a form-based code to downtown and an adjacent neighborhood. It’s a step that’s gaining popularity nationwide as proponents of "missing middle" housing call for more flexibility in the types of property uses cities allow in and near downtowns — and…Continue reading


More Downtowns Loosen Outdoor Alcohol Rules

February 17, 2022
Greensboro, NC, will launch a downtown social district in March. Within its boundaries, visitors will be able to stroll while carrying alcoholic beverages in specially labeled plastic cups. Greensboro is one of a number of North Carolina cities that have enacted, or are considering, downtown social districts after Gov. Roy Cooper signed a law in…Continue reading


Downtown Marketplace Supports Local Retail

February 3, 2022
In Redding, CA, a new venture has brought together 18 small shops in one location. Called Gather Downtown, it’s not quite a business incubator, not quite an antiques mart or a food hall. Instead, it’s a middle ground, an initiative that fills vacant space, nurtures local entrepreneurs, and provides a downtown gathering place. "We wanted…Continue reading