Guiding Principle of the Public Input
The project must preserve and enhance the economic vitality of downtown Concord by creating a Main Street that is a destination for residents and visitors alike. The project should identify opportunities for new and existing businesses, promote Main Street as a friendly and safe place to be and an attractive place to work, shop, dine, and live. The project should also enhance opportunities for cultural events and gatherings within the downtown.
Following the downtown’s last major improvements in the mid-1980’s and early 1990’s, several studies have been completed over the past 15 years that have presented opportunities, planning visions, and design concepts in an effort to improve the downtown area of Concord. These studies include the:
- 2011 Rethinking Main Street
- 2006 Downtown Streetscape Improvement Plan
- 2005 Opportunity Corridor Study
- 2001 Concord 2020 Vision Report
- 1997 Downtown Master Plan
In recent years, interest has been raised by members of the community and the City of Concord to create a “new” Main Street to support mixed-use development, an enhanced sense of place, and an expanded pedestrian environment, while preserving and enhancing the authentic historic character of the downtown.
The public involvement process to understand and achieve this goal has been extensive and has included a diverse representation from members of the community with relevant economic and business experience, residents, members of the City staff, members of City Council, property owners, restaurateurs and merchants as well as many more people with an interest in the future of the downtown. The public involvement process continues today and will continue until the project is complete and fully constructed in 2015.
Because of its potential benefits to the regional transportation and economic network, this project is a top ranking project on the Central New Hampshire Regional Planning Commission’s (CNHRPC) Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP), and a top priority project of the Concord City Council. Although this project includes a significant public-private funding component, federal funds are needed to supplement the final funding package.
The estimated project cost is $7,850,000 (including design, permitting and construction). Since the project meets the goals of the federal grant program, $4,710,000 or 60% of the project cost will be funded by a federal grant known as TIGER. The full name of this grant program is Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery.
The Concord Downtown Complete Streets Improvement Project represents the culmination of hard work, extensive public involvement, and context sensitive design that began in the late 1990’s. The regional impacts of this project are significant and will provide lasting, long-term transportation state of repair, safety, livability, sustainability, and economic benefits, all consistent with the TIGER grant criteria for positive long-term outcomes.
-FY2012 TIGER Discretionary Grant Application
-Rethinking Main Street, Final Report