Top 10 characteristics of a thriving downtown

26 May 2023


Community leaders often ask what they can do to make their downtown business district more vibrant. There is no surefire solution that will work for every community—each downtown has its own personality and unique landmarks. However, there are some common elements that thriving business districts share.

Consider which of these features might help raise your community’s downtown to the next level.

Good downtowns are easy for pedestrians to stroll and explore. That requires ample sidewalks and a pleasant environment for walking, where pedestrians feel separated from traffic and have safe intersections and designated street crossings. Beyond those basics, people-centered districts will also have:

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