We are just about two months into 2020 and so far things are going splendidly in the Downtown Bend Economic Improvement District (EID). We are seeing positive results from efforts invested in 2019, and we have great plans & opportunities for the upcoming summer season.
This last month we hosted two merchant meetings on the upcoming transportation changes in the Downtown core. We hosted both ODOT and the City of Bend in back to back meeting at At Liberty Arts Collaborative. These merchant meetings allowed our stakeholders an opportunity to educate themselves and provide important feedback to decision makers.
We have also been meeting with the Downtown Bend Parking Committee Advisory Work-group for two hours every week to guide upcoming changes to parking in Downtown and the surrounding areas. I am excited about the future of parking in Downtown Bend, and I see positive action steps being taken to solve some of the challenges we've been facing. I want to give a huge shout out to Tobias, the new City of Bend Parking Demand Manger, for the incredible work he has been doing and the plethora of innovative ideas he has brought to our city.
We've welcomed several new businesses to Downtown Bend recently, and we have several more opening soon. Here's a peek into what's new in Downtown Bend:
In the last two months we've spend over 130 hours sweeping sidewalks, picking up trash, and removing graffiti and stickers to make sure the Downtown Bend is always putting it's best foot forward. In addition, we've been working on a Downtown 'real estate box' program to assure that the boxes that are on our Downtown sidewalks stay clean & filled. It's Springtime right around the corner, and we've just begun to plan our deep 'Spring cleaning' for Downtown. We'll have volunteers dedicating extra hours to make sure we give downtown a good cleaning before going into our busy season.
We've had many folks ask us how to communicate with the City of Bend about issues in Downtown that need to be address that are outside of the DBBA scope of work. We recommend alerting the City of Bend by filling out a Citizen Service Request form. It's easy to do and we've attached printable instructions below. This form can be used if you see grease spilled in the alley, a dangerous sidewalk, a damaged sign, a pothole, or just about anything else that you'd like the City to give attention to.
We've been investing staff time and energy in creating better integration between events and merchants in Downtown Bend, and we are proud to report that due to our advocacy, we have seen a plethora of positive changes. As a merchant in Downtown Bend, this event season, you'll see changes in the City of Bend procedures, Lay it Out Events procedures (plus, check out these cool FREE marketing offers from Lay it Out!), Bend's Farmers Market procedures & more. We are really proud of our results in this area of service.
We also had a successful meeting with Bend City Councilors on this topic earlier this year, and we want to extend them a huge 'Thank You' for their support in this process and throughout this conversation.
In addition, we are looking at welcoming a new event to Downtown Bend, Giving in Style! This event will draw hundreds of people to Downtown, as well as featuring some of our local stores like Hotbox Betty, Jack + Millie, LuLu's, Outside In and Revolvr.
Speaking of Events, here is the 2020 calendar for your easy-to-use printable reference to event dates for the rest of the year.
This report certainly wouldn't be complete without a shout-out to the Waldorf School of Bend and all of their efforts to bring a little love and kindness to Downtown Bend during the annual 'Heart Bomb' in Downtown Bend. Hearts sprung from Winter tree branches, newspaper stands, benches and doorways. Community members arrive to open their businesses amid 'love bombs' of all shapes and sizes. Thank you, Waldorf School of Bend, for allowing us to host this event for another year.
We'd like to congratulate and offer a deep bow of gratitude to the business that will go down in history as being the very first businesses to ever have featured ads on the Downtown Bend on-street directories!
Thank you for helping Downtown Bend grow and thrive!
The new on-street directory inserts will be installed the first week of April, so keep your eye out to see these businesses featured in Downtown Bend! If you are interested in becoming a part of this stellar line-up, we have less than a handful of spaces left, contact us to reserve your space.
As always, I am honored and proud to serve Downtown Bend. It is my desire to serve Bend to the very best of my abilities and I welcome all community comments, feedback, and suggestions. Feel free to reach out to me at anytime.
Downtown Bend Business Association