Downtowns Not the Economic Engines They Used to Be

Downtowns used to serve primarily as the economic and job hub of a community, but are shifting to be more focused on providing a entertainment center and civic forum.
August 4, 2009, 6am PDT | Tim Halbur
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"This new assessment of downtown as primarily a center for civic opportunities makes sense and revives the ancient role of the plaza "forum" or "agora" concept–places that H.G. Wells affectionately referred to as ideal for "concourse and rendezvous." This redefinition may bother some who wish to return to the downtown apex of the 1950s, yet the idea is both viable and sustainable.

With the traditional town-center model serving as the hub of civic activities, residents and visitors alike are frequenting dining establishments, arts and music venues, and coffeehouses in the spirit of civic connection and community."

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Published on Monday, August 3, 2009 in New Geography
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