Policy and Advocacy
The urban place manager advocates for resources and policy in support of the successful management of equitable and inclusive urban places. Ensuring the success of a managed place requires identifying and implementing the appropriate policies representing the values, mission, and objectives of a place’s strategic plan. While seeking to maximize a user’s experience within a place, the urban place manager acts as a convener and facilitator for various stakeholders including, the private sector, local and regional government, community organizations, and everyone who interacts with the place. The place manager is tasked with the ability to win the trust and confidence of a diverse group of stakeholders, understand the issues confronting the urban district from a multitude of perspectives, and manage complex partnerships to focus on the district’s issues, projects and initiatives.
This session will present the first iteration of the IDA Vitality Index, powered by Stantec. The Index will be an interactive, online tool to benchmark the vitality of downtowns across the U.S. It includes select indicators of economy, inclusion and vibrancy to enable urban place managers to objectively quantify and benchmark their district’s strengths and weaknesses against peer cities. During the session, panelists will share the Index and discuss how districts can use this data.
The Challenges of Unlocking Neighborhood Potential Through Planning Policy
City planning tools like zoning and comprehensive planning are powerful forces that can help unleash the potential of neighborhoods, but the process of updating them can be a lengthy and a deeply political endeavor. Hear two case studies of planning policies being modernized to better reflect the current and future needs of neighborhoods.
Setting the National Agenda for Cities
Discuss the big-picture policy issues impacting cities, and the role of place management organizations in advocating for thoughtful solutions. Case studies from different countries involved in collective advocacy and organizing will review the national climate in their respective places, and open the floor for a discussion about key policy goals and priorities. This session will be a continuation of conversations from the IDA Ideas Forum and the Canadian National Policy Summit.
Preserving Culture and Community in Changing Urban Places
Gentrification and displacement of residents and businesses is a key issue facing communities as they grow and change, particularly for immigrants, refugees and communities of color. Learn from policymakers with urban district experience how place managers can partner to help preserve the essence of place, culture, and community – utilizing strategies like workforce investment, community wealth building, equitable development, business estate planning, nonprofit capacity building and more
As cities continue to grapple with storefront vacancies, short-term retail concepts are becoming essential to re-establishing the density of commercial districts and creating new, affordable business opportunities for local entrepreneurs. Find out how cities are supporting pop-up retail and dining by lowering barriers to entry for small businesses through regulatory incentives and comprehensive pop-up retail programs, with examples from California and Tennessee.
Peering into the Crystal Ball: Adapting to a Changing Climate
Addressing sustainability and resilience is critical to the future of our cities. Urban management districts are uniquely positioned to implement key strategies, from grassroots efforts to more large-scale planning initiatives. Learn how several downtowns across North America are catalyzing and advancing sustainability in their districts.
My Bad Reputation: Overcoming a Place’s Negative Perception
They say perception is reality, but often negative perceptions about a place obscure positive changes, inhibiting growth and success. Whether the narrative is about high crime rates or inauthentic tourist traps, changing perceptions can require a multi-prong effort. Using case studies from a variety of locations, panelists will discuss how tools such as audience research, re-branding and press strategy can highlight local assets and reshape the narrative.
Empower Collaborations and Partnership Between Municipalities and BIDs
IDA’s Municipal Partnerships Top Issues Council examined agreements and best practices to identify the factors that enable true partnerships between a municipality and a place management organization. Learn about collaborative approaches BIDs and municipalities have taken to strengthen their relationships. See tools for creating champions, breaking silos and structuring agreements.
Craft Data-Informed Persona in Places of All Sizes
Downtown associations know their attraction and retention results are due in part to their marketing efforts. But how do you produce content that helps your downtown stand out from the rest? In this panel, downtown regions like Bozeman, MT; Los Angeles, CA; and Memphis, TN will discuss how marketing their narrative started with understanding the unique pieces of their story – namely, their data.
Making the Case: Market Analysis Scenario Workshop
Today, downtown and urban district professionals need clear and concise data to strategically inform management and investment decisions. This workshop begins with a baseline understanding of the data that can be useful for understanding the local market, including how to retrieve the data and how to supplement the data with local knowledge. Structured as a practicum, participants will then work in small groups to apply the methodologies and analyses to build a comprehensive district profile.