How to Encourage and Enhance Investment in Your Downtown – From Infrastructure to Management and Marketing

How To Make Your Downtown a Success

Every downtown has its own character and issues. Recognizing your obstacles and your opportunities – not copying another municipality –is the key to success. Attendees learned how to embrace their town’s identity; understand their trade area; understand the ever-changing world of retail; how to attract unique downtown retailers; and the value of independently owned businesses and how to support them.

Among the questions this session addressed:

  • How do we know what retail will be successful in our communities?
  • How do developers evaluate a downtown to ensure project success? Are financial or other incentives necessary incentives to make the project financially feasible?
  • What are examples of proactive downtown recruitment techniques?
  • How has the downtown rental market changed or recovered since the 2007-8 recession?
  • How can new temporary/semi-permanent uses (for example: pop-up uses, parklets, “take back the streets” bicycle- and pedestrian-only days, etc.) offer added value to owners and other tenants?


  • Hon. Pasquale Menna Esq., Mayor, Borough of Red Bank (Moderator)
  • Joe Getz, President, Community InsightsSM, JGSC Group LLC
  • James Hughes, Keller Williams Realty – New Jersey Metro Group
  • Stephen Santola Esq., General Counsel, Woodmont Properties
  • Bob Zuckerman, South Orange Village Center Alliance

This panel was coordinated by Downtown New Jersey as part of the in-person 2016 NJLM Annual Conference, so there is no video of session.


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