- Conference - April 8, 2014 - Sparking New Ideas - Parking Strategies for Stronger Communities
- 2014 MA Downtown Initiative Technical Assistance Grant Application
- 2013 MDI Technical Assistance Grants
2012 Awards for Technical Assistance Site Visit Program
- Business Improvement District: Town of Beverly / Part II file size 7MB
- Design: Town of Norwood file size 23MB
- Creative Economy: Town of Montague
- Creative Economy: Town of Easton file size 1MB
- Economics of Downtown: Town of Reading file size 1MB
- Housing: Town of Chelmsford file size 106MB
- Parking: Town of Woburn file size 6MB
- Wayfinding:Town of Hingham file size 1MB
2011 Awards for Technical Assistance Site Visit Program
- Business Improvement District: Town of Beverly file size 1MB
- Design: Town of Bourne file size 2MB
- Economics of Downtown: Shelburne Falls/ Town of Shelburne and Buckland file size 2MB
- Housing: Town of South Hadley
- Parking: Town of Melrose file size 8MB
- Way Finding: Town of Bolton file size 2MB
2010 Awards for Technical Assistance Site Visit Program
- Business Improvement District: Town of Great Barrington
- Design: Town of Braintree
- Economics of Downtown: Town of Warren file size 116MB
- Parking: Town of Lexington file size 7MB
- Housing: Town of Danvers file size 2MB
- Wayfinding: Town of Beverly file size 7MB
2009 Awards for Technical Assistance Site Visit Program
- Business Improvement District: Town of Amherst
- Design: Town of Bourne- Buzzard's Bay file size 4MB
- Economics of Downtown: Town of Swampscott file size 7MB
- Parking: Town of Needham file size 2MB
- Wayfinding: Town of Maynard file size 3MB
DHCD's Massachusetts Downtown Initiative (MDI) offers a range of services and assistance to communities seeking help on how to revitalize their downtowns. The primary mission of the MDI is to make downtown revitalization an integral part of community development in cities and towns across the Commonwealth. MDI's guiding principles are that the most effective approach to downtown revitalization is a holistic one; that it addresses economic and community development needs; and that it provides a framework of interrelated activities that promote positive change in a downtown to keep it healthy and prosperous.
Successful downtown revitalization is comprehensive and includes a well-balanced community strategy composed of seven downtown building blocks:
* Encouraging Community Involvement & Ownership;
* Preserving & Enhancing Downtown Character;
* Ensuring Economic Vitality;
* Promoting Downtown Assets;
* Getting Into & Around Downtown;
* Living Downtown; and,
* Keeping Downtown Safe.
Currently, MDI provides assistance through the following components:
"Desktop" Technical Assistance
Ongoing technical assistance on downtown-related issues is provided by staff via telephone, fax, and written materials based on requests from communities as well as referrals from DHCD staff. Recent requests have included how to develop business recruitment programs, upper story spaces, and downtown organizational bylaws.
TA Site Visit Program
The MDI Technical Assistance Site Visit Program provides assistance to communities, through consultant services, targeting specific issues related to a community's downtown revitalization efforts. The goal of this technical assistance is to address and overcome obstacles to a community's downtown revitalization efforts. The TA Site Visit Program is limited to non-entitlement CDBG communities.
Education and Training
MDI is charged with development of downtown education and training opportunities that meet the needs of communities at various stages of downtown revitalization. A series of workshops is held each year on topics such as business recruitment and retention, design issues, creating a business improvement district, or upper-story housing.
Eligibility requirements vary among program components and restrictions may apply. The TA Site Visit Program is restricted to non-entitlement CDBG communities.
For additional information, please call the Division of Community Services at 617-573-1400.