Archive for News

Fargo investigating a BID

Here is a link to an article about interest in starting BID in downtown Fargo. Interesting things going on in the Midwest!

RFP for Consultants

The Great Cities Collaborative has issued an RFP for consultants.

The organizations listed above have received funding from the McKnight Foundation to explore the possibility of creating Business Improvement Districts (BID) and/or Parking Improvement Districts (PID) along the five commercial corridors they represent in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Each organization will need to prepare and circulate information about the advantages and disadvantages of BIDs and PIDs, and will function as a catalyst and resource engaging property owners and stakeholders in an informed conversation about the benefits of creating this model of cooperative management along the commercial corridors.

This is open until February 15, 2012.

For more information and a complete view of the requirements, please see the GreatCities_RFP. (pdf)


Small BIDs rely on residents too…

Small BIDs like those proposed for Lake Street rely extensively on residents who consider the improvement of the commercial corridor to be a matter of civic interest. Participating residents may work on committees and directly on Lake Street improvement measures. Like many of our corridor property owners, all of our residents are local voters and their participation adds political weight to the BID’s efforts to obtain financial or regulatory support from governing bodies.

Lake Street Key Tasks

  • a parking plan (the cost of which needs to be shared by the City of Minneapolis) and its implementation, including design and installation of signs indicating parking locations;
  • a corridor stewardship plan, including design of gateway signs, sidewalk cleaning and oversight of lighting maintenance;
  • comparison review and advocacy for changes to improve local business regulations and zoning;
  • administration of Great Streets facade improvement matching grant program;
  • involve residents as well as business interests in attracting investment in additional destination retail; and
  • aggressively market corridor shopping, eating, and cultural venues.

Good article: Five Reasons Why Business Improvement Districts are Good Public Policy

“These days, it seems that Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) are increasingly under attack. While I can only speak anecdotally, I continue to come across communities facing challenges to BID formation, challenges that would have seemed unlikely just a few years ago.

It stands to reason that in the current economic climate, BID formation inevitably slows down as property and business owners express justifiable concern about their bottom line. Yet a wholesale rejection of BIDs is a short-sighted effort to staunch losses that only results in a deeper hole by reducing the resources available to stabilize and enhance downtown communities. Like any asset, downtown requires on-going improvements and investments to compete against newer, shinier shopping environments. Moreover, consumers continue to keep close track of discretionary spending, which means more competition for fewer dollars. It is precisely this cut-throat competitive environment that makes BIDs an extremely valuable tool for downtown in their efforts to attract shoppers.

Here are five reasons why BIDs remain a good option for downtown revitalization.”

You can read the full (and awesome) article here:


Saving Money by Saving Water on Lake Street

Lake Street Council helps pilot a new program, saving money for businesses on Lake Street and verifying water and energy savings…

Full Article here

Great Cities Collaborative – New Websites

Great Cities launches new websites as part of collaborative research.