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City, Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance unveil Harrisonburg Downtown 2040

Harrisonburg Downtown 2040What are your hopes and dreams for Harrisonburg’s Downtown? That’s the question at the heart of Harrisonburg Downtown 2040 – a new initiative from the City of Harrisonburg and Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance that kicks off this week.

The effort, in collaboration with a consultant team led by Interface Studio, is a community-driven process focused on what Downtown should look like and how it
could change in the short- and long-term.

Engagement opportunities will focus on what community members see as their priorities for making Downtown a more desirable destination, any additions they would love to see come to the area, and what things are important for them to see preserved.

With Downtown already being beloved as the heart of The Friendly City, and known throughout the region as Virginia’s first Culinary District, now is the chance for
residents to shape the next 20 years of growth, culture and design of Downtown.

“One of the things we are most proud of here in Harrisonburg is the incredible atmosphere and distinctiveness of our Downtown,” Harrisonburg Economic Development Director Brian Shull said. “That’s due to the hard work and dedication of our local businesses, and the creativeness and enthusiasm of our residents over the years. We are very excited to see where Downtown goes from here and what ideas our community brings to the table during Downtown 2040.”

Residents and visitors to Harrisonburg should be on the lookout for all the unique ways to contribute to Downtown 2040 at some of their favorite local restaurants and businesses. Be sure to grab one of the Downtown 2040 Take-Out Menus as you’re taking part in Downtown Restaurant Month, and place your order for how to strengthen Downtown in a short, fun survey.

Make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to take home one of the Downtown 2040 Collectible Coasters soon to be available in area restaurants and breweries. These coasters invite you to write down your wish for Downtown, snap a photo and share on social media using the hashtag #DreamDowntownHVA.

Keep your coaster afterward to always remember how you helped shape Downtown’s future.

The Downtown 2040 Collaborative Map is available online for participants to visit, navigating their way virtually through the area to highlight exactly where they would like to see their dreams for Downtown become a reality. Mark all your favorite Special Places, locate spots you have great improvement ideas for, and even highlight areas you think need to be addressed.

“Downtown truly is the heart of our community, so we are excited about this opportunity to involve community members in imaging what Downtown could become in 20 years,” Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance Executive Director Andrea Dono said. “With a community-driven vision and road map in hand, we will have a strategic plan and great ideas to help us achieve that vision together.”

All the information gathered will factor into Harrisonburg Downtown 2040, a master plan which will guide future development and projects in the area. The plan will be completed in fall 2021 and shared publicly.

More information on the effort is available at www.harrisonburgva.gov/downtown-2040.


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