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2012 REPORT DOWNTOWN CANTON SPECIAL IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT

WELCOME Dear SID Member: We are pleased to present to you our 2012 Annual Report for the Downtown Canton Special Improvement District (SID). The report highlights our accomplishments for the 15th full year of operation. Overall, activity in downtown Canton increased due largely to the presence of oil and gas related businesses in our area. Staff continued to emphasize the importance of downtown aesthetics and marketing, and a number of new businesses joined our center city. Two important new initiatives will be shaping our downtown. First, the SID board approved moving forward with an update of our 2003 Downtown Master Plan. We expect the revised plan to be completed by the first quarter of 2013. Secondly, the SID is committed to being the catalyst to develop plans for downtown living. In fact, we expect a new market rate apartment project to be unveiled this year. We appreciate all of the support we receive from our partners, the City of Canton, the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce and ArtsinStark. Thanks also to our Board of Directors and property owners for their counsel, financial support and ideas. We look forward to continued success in revitalizing our downtown and creating value for our property owners. Sincerely, David T. Beule Chairman of the Board Michael P. Gill President

MISSION STATEMENT The Downtown Canton Special Improvement District is a nonprofit corporation that provides programming to preserve the economic well being of downtown Canton. The SID is dedicated to preserving the aesthetic, architectural, and historic character of the downtown area. The organization is funded by special assessments on downtown property owners.

DOWNTOWN AESTHETICS Color Downtown The beautification of the center city continued with the planting of the 50-plus flowerbeds downtown. For the ninth year, volunteers donated their time and efforts to make downtown look its best throughout the summer. Banners Promoting upcoming events, celebrating the seasons and raising awareness of civic and cultural organizations in the SID, banners line and decorate the streets. The SID approves and coordinates the placement of banners throughout downtown with the City. Security Increased police presence is added in the downtown areas Monday through Thursday, 6 to 10 p.m. from November through March. This additional security cruises the center city, and walks among the restaurants and bars, and provides a sense of well-being to downtown visitors. Architectural Review Board To preserve and protect the historical, cultural and architectural integrity of downtown, an Architectural Review Board was created in 2005. This Board has reviewed 13 projects so far this year.

Gumbuster Herman Horner, our resident Gumbuster, continues to operate the Gumbuster Gumcart in downtown Canton during the summer and early fall. Using a solution that is entirely safe for the environment, this machine devours gum and keeps the sidewalks in the central city clean. Sidewalks Over 2,100 feet of new streetscape sidewalks were added this year, which included brick inlays, trees and ornamental light posts. North/South Plaza The SID adopted the North and South Plaza areas. This ensured that the areas were maintained, and assisted the city in beautifying this area.

FOOD & FUN! Farmers’ Market The Canton Farmers’ Market experienced record crowds this year! Our new location, at the corner of McKinley Ave. NW and 4th St. NW in the parking lot of the Timken High School Administrative Building, proved to be the perfect home for the market. The Canton Farmers’ Market’s incredible momentum comes from our broad base of conscientious and caring farmers and producers, chefs, artists and most importantly, the consumers. We not only offer fresh produce, delicious baked goods, organic meats and cheeses, beautiful flowers, plants and herbs, but we also offer a great lineup of music, arts and more for our customers to enjoy! Community Garden Each year, a breathtaking variety of vegetables, fruits, flowers and herbs are grown in the Downtown Canton/Summit Neighborhood Community Garden. This year was no different, with families and businesses occupying all 75 spaces! Project Rebuild Inc. is our garden coordinator and plays a big role in the success of the garden year after year. This year, Project Rebuild converted the garden to raised beds, which enhanced the aesthetics of the garden and benefitted all of our users. The dedication of all of the gardeners and partners is bountiful; there is an overall sense of community pride and spirit at the garden. The garden has transformed a once blighted space into a place of beauty and community.

Downtown Deals This promotion, funded by the SID, invited patrons to enjoy downtown restaurants at a discount each Wednesday evening in February and March, and again in September, October and November. The SID continues to support downtown restaurants’ success by coordinating meetings as needed to capture new marketing ideas. Restaurant & Arts District Guide The two guides that list downtown eateries and arts organizations have been reformatted to pocket guides and were distributed around Canton and in tourist welcome centers. The guides provide a quick listing of where to go and what to do downtown. Canton Food Tours This is a privately owned company which enhances downtown by offering walking and van tours that show off the food, history and art of our city.

ARTS & ACTIVITIES Arts Explosion The SID continues to partner with ArtsinStark in the ongoing development of arts initiatives in our downtown. This partnership includes collaborating on First Fridays, marketing and funding. A new pocket guide to the Arts District was also introduced. First Friday The success of First Friday is evident by the consistent number of people who attend this celebration of the arts, food and entertainment. 2012 marked First Friday’s fifth year and 60th consecutive event. This unique downtown Canton tradition is the result of a partnership with ArtsinStark, and continues to grow each year. Cinema in the City Attendees brought blankets, chairs, family and friends to enjoy this cinematic experience on Market Square. Partnering with ystark! and the Palace Theatre, three Hollywood hit movies were screened on an inflatable screen including Back to the Future, The Sandlot and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Moviegoers eager to get the best spot staked out their spaces and enjoyed preshow entertainment and concessions. 4th Street Concert Series This popular, free concert series, under the lights in the heart of the Canton Arts District, had something for everyone this season. With tunes from Pat Dailey, The Ultimate Journey Experience and Broken Road: A Rascal Flatts Tribute Band, 4th Street was transformed and energized with this series.

Photo courtesy of Jeremy Aronhalt, A Studio Photography

DESTINATION DOWNTOWN ANNUAL FESTIVALS

TASTE OF CANTON

This incredible spring food festival serves up local flavor and fare with a side of entertainment!

BLUES FESTIVAL

Boogie your way downtown, sit back with an ice-cold beverage, delicious midway fare, sensational tunes and great friends and enjoy the best outdoor music festival north of Memphis!

VINTAGE CANTON

Vintage Canton is a sophisticated downtown gathering, offering distinctive center city charm alongside live music, vibrant art exhibits and, of course, quality local wine and wine from around the world!

LIGHT UP DOWNTOWN

Light Up Downtown is your chance to watch 16 blocks come alive with attractions, entertainment, refreshments and fun for children of all ages.

Photo courtesy of Michael Barath, Just Us Two Photography

Photo courtesy of Shawn Wood, Studio 7 Photography

Photo courtesy of Michael Barath, Just Us Two Photography

ADMINISTRATION Downtown Contacts An e-mail listing of downtown contacts is maintained to ensure that our businesses and offices are informed about events and other happenings in our center city. In 2012, a census of downtown businesses and employees was conducted. Space Inventory An updated space inventory is maintained online at www.downtowncanton.com. The listing provides information on downtown buildings, including square footage, space availability, pricing, and contact information. The SID also calculates occupancy rates for our Class A, B and C buildings.

BUSINESS & PLANS SID Master Plan The SID Master Plan Committee feels that now is a perfect time to consider an update of our 2003 Downtown Master Plan. So many things have changed since early 2000 that it now seems appropriate to bring our master plan up to date with today’s reality. Consequently, the SID Board of Directors selected czb LLC to provide a data update, conduct a document review relating to zoning, land use plans, etc., interview stakeholders, and present the proposed revisions to our plan. The results of this process are expected to be announced in the first quarter of 2013. Downtown Living Downtown Canton looks good and feels good, but it is in need of people living downtown to continue the momentum each and every day. The SID Master Plan Downtown Living subcommittee has been working for the past year to develop a strategy that can create living space in our center city. The committee has conducted focus groups, utilized surveys, collected data on existing units and explored opportunity sites for future units. The Downtown Canton Land Bank will assist by carrying out this strategy of developing new market rate apartments at 400 McKinley Avenue NW. The hope is to encourage the development of other units downtown by other groups and developers. Economic Development Downtown Canton enjoyed another great year of economic activity. New restaurants opening in our center city included Sports Therapy Bar and Grill, The Lion’s Den, Tozzi’s Restaurant Downtown, and Basil Asian Bistro. Other new businesses downtown are Agile Network Builders, Erinn’s Laine Primitive Candles, B-Side Wine House, Gem Charter School, and Journey Studios. Oil and gas related business increased downtown with Chesapeake Energy expanding its presence, along with Mike Baker, Inc., Dawood Engineering, CESO, and Jackson Kelly LPA. In addition, the YMCA and Stark State College have announced plans to establish a presence downtown. And VXI Global Solutions continues to rapidly expand their work force.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS David T. Beule Chairman Robert King Vice Chairman Rodney W. Meadows Treasurer Jon H. Jacob Secretary

2012

ANNUAL AWARDS Created by artist su nimon

Ronald D. Becker Timothy S. Belden Steve Coon Robert J. Hankins Mayor William J. Healy II Michael E. King Dennis P. Saunier Chris Smith Michael E. Williams

STAFF

Basil Asian Bistro

Michael P. Gill President Krista Schumacher Event Manager Annette Rosenberger Office Manager

Lynda Tuttle’s Art Center

Each year, the SID Board recognizes downtown organizations that are making a significant contribution to the revitalization of our city by presenting these businesses with a SID Award. The SID Board applauds their commitment & investment in downtown Canton. B Side Wine House

Canton Food Tours

The Lion’s Den

Sports Therapy Bar and Grill

Tozzi’s Restaurant Downtown

Canton Development Partnership 222 Market Ave. N Canton, Ohio 44702 330.456.0468 DowntownCanton.com


2012 Downtown Canton SID Annual Report