SB Friedman led a downtown market analysis and revitalization strategy for Wilmington, Illinois, in support of CMAP’s Local Technical Assistance (LTA) Projects. Under an umbrella engagement, we have been providing assistance on a task order basis for community or subarea market analyses, which inform a specific recommendation and propose implementation steps.
The purpose of our engagement in Wilmington was to assess the current state of the downtown, conduct case studies of comparable communities, and provide recommendations and implementation steps for feasible downtown development strategies based on our analysis.
Our work on this project included:
- Analyzing and comparing the business mix for Wilmington’s three major business corridors;
- Assessing Wilmington’s downtown institutions and activity generators, and their relation to downtown attractiveness;
- Performing case studies of the downtowns of four comparable communities;
- Comparing the similar four communities’ business mixes and activity generators to Wilmington’s;
- Identifying four placemaking strategies for downtown Wilmington; and
- Providing implementation steps for each of the identified strategies.
Results: SB Friedman produced a briefing book that describes the existing conditions in Wilmington’s downtown business district, identifies four placemaking strategies that would catalyze downtown activity, and provides implementation steps for each strategy. In addition, we presented the results of our work to the Wilmington Downtown Steering Committee.