Holiday Cheer Boosts Businesses Along Main Street

Eight years after downtown Rochester sparked a retail resurgence along its Main Street with a holiday light display, small towns across Metro Detroit are following suit to create a sense of place and lure shoppers away from boring big boxes.

December 2, 2013, 8:00 AM PST

By Jonathan Nettler @nettsj


"In recent years, holiday displays have popped up in cities and downtowns across Metro Detroit that are attempting to create a destination for shoppers who want a different experience than they can get in a mall or shopping center," reports Lauren Abdel-Razzaq. Following the success of Rochester’s "Big Bright Light Show", Troy is launching the "Lights of Hope" project along Big Beaver Road. The holiday light display builds on recent changes to the city's zoning ordinance meant to encourage a walkable downtown 

"Other displays, including those in Shain Park in Birmingham and in downtown Royal Oak and the Wayne County Lightfest, have already lit up to get shoppers to open their wallets and pocketbooks," adds Abdel-Razzaq.

"In a time when buying local resonates, small businesses that typically find it difficult to compete with big-box stores and their advertising budgets can get an edge on holiday sales by creating the 'whole downtown experience,' said Kristi Trevarrow, executive director of the Rochester Downtown Development Authority."

Sunday, December 1, 2013 in The Detroit News

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