FAIRBORN — Fairborn city and community leaders and local business owners recently put their heads together to discuss revitalizing downtown, resulting in a number of ideas in the works.
“It was a group of folks who represented the city, both staff and council, our chamber of commerce and the Downtown Fairborn Betterment Association,” City Manager Rob Anderson said. “In the past, those groups have worked interdependently and there has not been a whole lot of coordination between those three groups.”
Fairborn is seeking to start a downtown facade improvement program, which would assist and/or reward local business owners with cleanup efforts after the facilities begin showing signs of aging.
“We want to create an incentive where the city can help facilitate renovations — where they either clean it up, fix it up, completely renovate it — it’s up to what the property owner wants to do,” Anderson said. “We want to help make our downtown as vibrant as it possibly can be.”
Fairborn is additionally looking into hiring an individual who would be dedicated to serving as a liaison between city leaders and local merchants, following an example set by other communities with vibrant downtown areas, such as the City of Miamisburg and Tipp City. Anderson said it is likely that it would involve hiring a new city employee, but is still examining options.
“We’re trying to figure out what that structure looks like — who that person reports to, what their responsibilities are,” he said. “We’re doing research on our end to keep that going.”
The city is also in the midst of conversations that involve bringing new businesses, or breathing life back into former businesses, to the Main Street and Broad Street area, such as revamping the Fairborn Theatre and bringing a brewpub to the past fire station, among others.
Contact Whitney Vickers at 937-502-4532.