Annual Report 2020-2021 DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 1 6/28/22 2:37 PM
We are pleased to be able to share this summary of the DDA’s work over the past fiscal year. Each year, as we compile and analyze our outcomes, we have the opportunity to see where we have been, what we have done, and the incremental targets needed for our future. For me, the annual report is a reminder that we must keep moving forward, looking for newer and better ways to provide value to the community we serve. It’s also a reminder of the hard work, dedication, and talent of the DDA board and staff. We have a great team, and I am proud and grateful to be part of it. As challenging and destabilizing as 2020 was, 2021 proved that with vision and commitment, a city can make a rebound. And not just back to where we were...but a great leap forward. West Palm Beach has done just that over the past year. Unfortunately, the impacts of COVID still remain. However, the tenacity and creativity of our local business community and the love of place that residents have for this urban neighborhood, coupled with investments and programs delivered by the DDA and Community Redevelopment Agency have all together been the rising tide that is lifting all ships.
There’s still plenty of work to do – and there always will be – but the future of Downtown West Palm Beach has never looked brighter!
DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 2 6/28/22 2:37 PM
On behalf of the board and staff at the DDA, I can confidently say that we are proud to be part of the team that makes Downtown West Palm Beach the center of paradise, and the heart of this amazing city.
About AuthorityDevelopmentDowntownthe The West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is an independent taxing district created in 1967 by a special act of the Florida Legislature. Working in close coordination with the City of West Palm Beach and West Palm Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) to deliver the most impactful and value-based outcomes possible to our stakeholders. Mission: To promote and enhance a vibrant Downtown West Palm Beach. In the following pages, you will learn how the DDA supports 4 strategic goals: Business Development Public MarketingRealmand Public Relations Neighborhood Services DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 3 6/28/22 2:37 PM
DevelopmentBusiness The DDA’s economic development efforts are in harmony with the City’s vision of West Palm Beach as a vibrant, world-class city with a diverse and thriving economy. The DDA’s programs align with the City’s stated economic development goals: • Talent attraction • A healthy business climate • Supportive infrastructure • Quality of place • Innovation and entrepreneurship Partnerships Thoroughfare Pop-up Market 2.0 From December 5, 2020 to May 2, 2021, the large vacant space at 314 Clematis Street was activated from Friday through Sunday with four full-time vendors and 13 collaborators that executed 52 workshops and activations. Examples included succulent planting, fashion shows, book signing, low-proof pop-up tasting, Friend’s Night Out, coffee tastings and demos, pop-up art show. Business6AssistanceFaçade Grants $51,699.37 awarded 1 Business Incentive Grant $50,000 awarded 23 Tier One Incentives $198,567.24 awarded Business Development Total Budget DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 4 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Public MaintenanceRealm Outcome: (90 days from contract) 2,2005.74706>550 Tons of trash and debris removed Cigarette butts per week collected Palm fronds removed from streets and sidewalks Commercial size trash bags of garbage collected Outreach Team The DDA continues its partnership with the City of West Palm Beach to provide a high-level of homeless outreach to individuals in the Downtown District. Housing and Community Development in-house program included dedicated staff who are trained social workers, mental health professionals and other key personnel essential for this effort. Outcome: Daily outreach with assistance from DDA security ambassadors, West Palm Beach Police Department, Northwood Security Ambassadors and Vicker’s House staff. 23933402461185596246 Individuals attained referrals and access to mental health and substance abuse resources Chronically homeless individuals housed Chronically homeless individuals reunited with family through the Homeward Bound Program Assistance requests made through the City’s online homeless activity Engagementsreporterwith local businesses and community groups to provide education and resources Engagements throughout parks, neighborhoods, and target areas Individuals refused services Downtown Clean Team The DDA revamped the program with new contractor, Image Companies. Services now cover additional areas of the district with the exclusion of the Downtown Waterfront. A team of 10 members work 7 days a week providing an increased cleaning and litter removal service beginning at 5:30 a.m. utilizing a street sweeper and multiple utility vehicles which allow more flexibility and efficiency for removing trash and debris. DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 5 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Physical LandscapingCleaningEnvironmentandMaintenance With the completion of the Clematis Streetscape, the DDA executed the first completed year with additional landscaping areas. The dedicated landscaping team is responsible for debris removal and maintenance of plant beds and baskets along Clematis Street, as well as the Seaboard Train Station. The dedicated landscaping team was responsible for litter removal as well in the Clematis core and at the Seaboard Train Station, prior to the beginning of the Downtown Clean Team. 229Outcome:Trimmed trees Clematis Street (100 -800 Block) is maintained 5 days a week 174 hanging baskets 87 medium sized beds 23 XL round / oval mid-block beds 26 small round ground cover beds Intersection beds outside of Clematis are maintained twice a week 12 intersections of City maintained roadways - totaling 6 medians and 33 large beds City Hall is maintained 4 days a week with a full service on the 5th day City Parking Garages are maintained twice a week mowing, weed eating and edging Tri Rail Station is maintained 4 days a week with a full service on the 5th RosemarydayAvenue from Clematis Street to Evernia Street is maintained twice a week; 39 small round beds Tent site is maintained twice a month; mowing,weed eating and edging Pressure Washing Green Earth Power Washing is contracted to clean sidewalks routinely in order to maintain our clean space appeal. Instead of the traditional pressure wash, cleaning is accomplished using steam and an ecofriendly cleaning solution. Outcome: Cleaned: 3,580,050 square feet DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 6 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Marketing and Public Relations DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 7 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Dance Photography Competition (April 29 – June 1, 2021)
Due to COVID-19 and its effects on the community, conveying safety and aspirational messaging was a primary focus. Continued efforts through an engagement campaign, positive and aspirational messaging were release twice a week across all social media channels. i.e. Looking for a break? A stroll along the waterfront is just what you need.
To celebrate the return of in-person events and the performing arts after a yearlong hiatus due to the ongoing pandemic, the DDA launched a dance photography contest on International Dance Day, April 29, allowing photographers and dancers to team up and create artistic photos in iconic locations throughout the Downtown District. With a month-long public voting, the top 3 winners received cash prizes ranging from $250-$750. As a result, with over 100 submissions the DDA received a gallery to be utilized in their marketing and advertising purposes.
Black Art Matters (February 2021)
The DDA hosted an online giveaway contest during the City of West Palm Beach’s programming for Independence Day called 4th on Flagler in an effort to build awareness and engage with a broader audience. The winner received a $100 gift card to any DowntownWPB restaurant and (4) VIP Tickets to 4th on Flagler. Over 1000 entries were received.
Marketing and Public Relations DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 8 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Pairings (May 27, 2021)
Mobile Vaccination Unit (August 19, 26, and September 2, 2021)
Throughout Black History month, a new virtual program series was launched honoring the contributions of Black Americans to Downtown West Palm Beach. The series “Black Art Matters,” or “B.A.M.” highlighted the talents of young black artists in the local community every Wednesday of the month on Facebook LIVE. Emerging artists captivated audiences near and far as they painted, sang and played instruments at iconic locations in the district. This allowed viewers to “be here” safely during restricted times.
4th on Flagler - VIP Experience Contest (June 13 – 29, 2021)
Downtown Love Letters (October 12 – November 20, 2020)
The progressive sampling tour showcased the diverse array of dining options in Downtown West Palm Beach while increasing traffic, revenue, and positive exposure to downtown merchants. Due to COVID safety, ticket capacity was decreased to 600 allowing for a more enjoyable experience for patrons who attained an all-inclusive pass for appetizer, entrée, or dessert with a specialty cocktail pairing to 14 businesses. In addition, cultural experiences such as interactive chalk art and live entertainment were incorporated for residents and visitors’ enhanced experience.
In response to the resurgence of COVID-19 and the declared state of emergency here in Palm Beach County, the DDA worked in conjunction with the Palm Beach County Health Care District to offer a program designed to incentivize unvaccinated persons who work in the DDA District to get vaccinated against COVID-19.
ServicesNeighborhood A neighborhood is a collection of intimate, welcoming public spaces that support a wide range of activities. Activating small public spaces allows for community development planning from the perspective of those who frequent downtown the most – the people who live here. Placemaking programs and projects were executed to add community focused programming to public spaces throughout the district. 8,500 Residents 7,700 Units Security Ambassadors A full-time private public safety unit was contracted with Professional Security Consultants. Essentially the “eyes and ears” of the district, ambassadors work closely with West Palm Beach Police Department to improve safety throughout the Downtown District. The dedicated team provides assistance to businesses, residents and visitors with information or on hand to contact emergency services seven days a week whether on foot, bike, or mobile transportation. 667Outcome:Checked in with or assisted a business 324 Answered calls for service from businesses 3,573 Residential Check-In 186 Police / Fire / EMS / Traffic 6,245 Patrols of the area 1,033 Public Assist 582 Homeless Interactions 137 Addressed violations such as fishing, parking, and skateboarding 98 Maintenance and graffiti reporting Trolley Ridership Due to COVID safety precaution, trolley services resumed 3 months prior to the end of the fiscal year acquiring a ridership of 34,786. Awards Florida Festivals & Events SUNsational Awards 1st Place Instagram – West Palm Beach Arts & Entertainment District Program/Event Guide/Brochure – Pairings Food & Wine Event Promotional Mailer – Pairings Food & Wine Event 2nd Place Multi-Agency Collaborative Program – Dining On The Spot Virtual Event – Black Art Matters Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Initiative – Black Art Matters Promotional Item – Pairings Food & Wine Event 3rd Place Program/Event Guide/Brochure –Dining On The Spot Signage – Dining On The Spot Radio Program, Ad, or PSA – Black Art Matters Community Outreach Program – Esperanza Day Twitter – Downtown West Palm Beach International Downtown AssociationDowntown Achievement Awards Public Space Management and Operations –Dining on the Spot Florida Redevelopment Association Awards Out of the Box - Dining on the Spot MarCom Award Gold – 2020 DowntownWPB Holiday commercial DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 9 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Esperanza Day (May 15, 2021)
DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 10 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Love Comes Naturally Mural (March 2021)
Placemaking is a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces. Placemaking capitalizes on a local community’s assets, inspiration, and potential, with the intention of creating public spaces that promote people’s health, happiness, and well-being.
What is Placemaking?
After a Request for Proposal (RFP) was issued in September 2020, the outdoor mural, entitled “Love Comes Naturally” by a team of students from Dreyfoos School of the Arts was selected. It depicts the expression of three diverse types of lovefamilial, romantic, and platonic, while also placing an emphasis on the interaction between human love and nature.
WPB Creatives at Thoroughfare (December 2020 – May 2021) During the popular community pop-up market, a diverse array of local artists and interactive workshops allowed residents, visitors, and businesses to connect. Over 17 musicians ranging from live acoustic to DJ sessions entertained attendees and passerby.
As a result, by activating underutilized alleyways, we can improve the quality of life through a network of pedestrian-oriented passageways that can become great public spaces. This allows for a safer environment by transforming what’s deemed as a dark place for potential crime to an area that can be beautified and safer for people to occupy.
In partnership with City of West Palm Beach and Salento Coffee, the first public space gathering since outdoor events’ restrictions were lifted was hosted in the newly renovated 300 Block alleyway. The event showcased different Latin cultures and folklore through music and dance performances. Additionally, it was the first bilingual event which targeted our efforts to provide more inclusive and diverse programming in the district and attained over 500 attendees.
The West Palm Beach A&E District is a non-profit organization that works collaboratively with local artists and arts institutions to highlight the vibrant creative community in the Downtown area.
Beach continues to grow. • DDA represents 31.28% of the City’s taxable value on new construction • Revenue per acre is $5,394,887; preliminary 2021 value (480 acres) • The DDA tax base and taxable value is 1.17% of the county • Residential properties have increased in value by 67% in the last 5 years Total Budget DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 11 6/28/22 2:37 PM
The A&E grew out of the DDA’s long-time work with the local arts community and now serves as a partner organization. The A&E is also an effective tool to pursue non-tax funds through grants for arts and culture programs and project.
WestDowntownPalm Beach Facts .75 Square Miles 1967 Year of incorporation 39 Median Age $69,500 Median Household Income The DDA District has increased its taxable value by $186,829,587 since last year The value of Downtown
The tax base is Commercial 49% vs. Residential 51% Overall Budget % and Expenditures Residential Taxable Values: $568,690,534 Public MaintenanceRealm23% Marketing/PublicRelations18% Business Development12% Professional Services 3% Reserves7% Operations15% Neighborhood Services 22% Downtown AssociationNeighborhood(DNA)WestPalmBeachArts&EntertainmentDistrictFinancial Overview
The A&E District enhances the appeal of West Palm Beach as a visitor destination, drawing attention to its status as a vibrant city illuminated by its beauty and range of creative expression. West Palm
The DNA is a non-partisan, volunteer based, 501c3 nonprofit organization that creates opportunities for people to interact with each other and local government in Downtown West Palm Beach. Their mission is to sponsor and support lectures and special activities, educate residents about public issues, advocate for public safety and inform the City and other organizations about members’ needs.
Downtown Development Authority Contract Partners: Public SecurityRelationsAmbassador Program Downtown Trolley System Operator Landscape Maintenance
Tiffany Faublas, Marketing Director
Samantha Moore, Office Manager
Legal AnnualServicesIndependent Audit
Public space programming in collaboration with Bike West Palm Beach to increase use and add community-focused programming to public spaces by bringing people together and connecting them through bicycling. This program allows the opportunity for residents to meet their neighbors and increase wellness and environmental programming in public spaces.
DDA Board: Robert Sanders, DDA Chairman
Cynthia UpendoNalleyShabazz DDA Staff: Raphael Clemente, Executive Director
Mary Hurley Lane
Sherryl Muriente, Manager of Urban Placemaking
Gehl App and Residential Volunteer Program
Art Utility Boxes
Activating underutilized alleyways can improve the quality of life through a network of pedestrian-oriented passageways which can become great public spaces. This allows for a safer environment by transforming what’s deemed as a dark place for potential crime to an area that is beautified and safer for people to occupy. An activation plan based on communityled projects is in development. Plans/Looking Ahead
Catherine Ast, District Services Manager
Michelle Barascout, Marketing Coordinator (June 2021)
Partnering with Gehl Group for a data collection project to help evaluate our projects and programs. With the assistance of volunteers Downtown West Palm Beach’s public spaces will be measured electronically by counting pedestrians and bikes, as well as analyzed how spaces are used by residents and visitors. Participating volunteers will receive community hours for their service. Sunset Silent Disco Community engagement programming in a collaboration with Be You Disco to improve downtown’s quality of life by bringing people together and connecting them through dancing and the activation of public space with creative activities that include music from local songwriters. Bike Valet
Shelly Williams, Director of Administration
DDA - 2020-2021 Annual Report - 032222.indd 12 6/28/22 2:37 PM
Rick Reikenis, DDA Vice-Chairman
Lisa Gerard Bill Jacobson (July 2020)
Residential programming in collaboration with local to provide a better quality of life for residents and visitors alike while promoting a health and wellness outdoor pop-up program in private and/or public spaces will return once a month at various locations in the district. The outdoor atmosphere will promote self-care, belonging, and mental well-being for all. Community Cafecito Community engagement hour hosted by the DDA to provide an afternoon pick-me-up and informal conversations with the community. Local bakeries to be featured/rotated throughout program duration to all attendees to become familiar with our merchants.
Sabrina Lolo, Marketing Coordinator (September 2021)
Traffic utility boxes are often an overlooked part of urban infrastructure and can easily be transformed with artwork to celebrate and engage our community. This program will attain artwork submissions from local artists to be digitally printed and used in vinyl wrapping of utility boxes.
Varissa Dass (July 2021)
Pressure JanitorialWashingandPublic Space Maintenance Holiday Lighting and Decorations
Teneka James-Feaman, Associate Executive Director