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DOWNTOWN DIGEST - MAY 2017
warm hearts ~ open minds ~ hard work ~ prosperity

Insight from the Executive Director 


Question 1:  So what exactly do you do?
 
Answer:  In short, we drive community and economic development focused solely in downtown Framingham.  The Framingham Downtown Renaissance (FDR) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation committed to forging the necessary investment to generate jobs and income, increase community connections, and support human-scale, walkable design.                                           
Question 2:  How do you do it?

Answer:  Using the Main Street America Model, we follow this four-point approach:

a) economic vitality
We have formed the Downtown Framingham Business Coalition to bring the businesses together to discuss and implement cross-collaborations, financial assistance sources, marketing, comprehensive waste management, and other mixed-use property dynamics.

b) design
We drive continuous attention and seek improvements to the downtown environment by working with property owners, business owners, and government officials to enhance and preserve building facades, storefront window design, pedestrian access, signage, open space usage, and public art.  

c) promotion 
We organize community events with our public and private partners to demonstrate a positive, memorable sensory experience while also creating a renewed interest and awareness of all downtown Framingham has to offer. Community events are designed to cultivate repeat foot traffic in our downtown.

d) organization
FDR is led by an Executive Director and 15-member board comprised of public and private stakeholders who express sincere interest, requisite skills, and the relevant experience required to advance downtown Framingham.   Aside from the Executive Director, assistance also is provided by student interns and volunteers.

Question 3:  Where does the funding come from?

Answer:  A Community Development Block Grant funds one full-time position. Operating funds are provided through generous private and public donations, event fundraising, and grants.  

UPCOMING DOWNTOWN EVENTS

Public Board Meeting
Thursday, May 11th | 8 am 
Framingham Town Hall | Ablondi Room
brewCycle
block party + outdoor beer garden

Saving the Earth with Bikes & Beer
Sunday, May 21st | 12 pm to 4 pm
Exhibit 'A' Brewing Company 
81 Morton Street
Downtown Framingham Business Coalition
Tuesday, May 30th | 9:30 am
Sofa Cafe | 181 Concord Street
- parking and wayfinding
- pathway to outdoor seating
- comprehensive waste management
almost Summer Saunter Community Stroll
Friday, June 16th | 6 pm
Stay tuned for our venue list, entertainment line-up, and fun community icebreakers!  

SMALL BUSINESS NEWS

 
- Enzo's Bakery & Luncheonette is now open at 63 Hollis Street

- Xfinity is now open at 100 Concord Street  

- Mega Realty is growing with the expansion into both 16 and 18 Union Avenue

- Topo Athletic is a recent addition at 1 Grant Street 

- A new ice cream shop is undergoing construction at 24 Union Avenue  

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

- Anastasia's Oven & Grill - 12 Union Avenue

- Exhibit 'A' Brewing Company - 81 Morton Street 

- n+1 cyclery - 57 Waverly Street

 
- Deluxe Depot Diner - 417 Waverly Street

- Jack's Abby - 100 Clinton Street
PROPERTY OWNER SPOTLIGHT
leading the way in downtown Framingham
Property:  Bullard Building (erected in 1920 at 410 Waverly Street) 

Property Owner:  Brian Li (since 2012)

Company:  Bullard Building, LLC

Investments:  new HVAC system, new chill tower, painted facade, power-washed awnings

Upcoming enhancements:  replace lower roof through J&R Roofing, pave parking lot

Renewable energy project:  conducted engineering study to place solar panels on roof that are anchored by concrete.  Solar panels help preserve the roof.  New system will cover 100 percent of utilities and deliver a 20 percent return on investment.

Partnerships:  
a) collaborates with the Framingham Police Department and business owners to develop a safe, walkable area in Irving Square, especially near the Bullard Building.

b) assisted student researchers from Harvard and MIT to support their feasibility study on affordable housing in the Bullard Building that resembles the multi-million dollar Station Landing in Medford.

 

IN THE NEWS

MONTHLY REWIND!

TIME FOR GRATITUDE
three partners who help us realize shared goals for prosperity 
Each year, Middlesex Savings Bank makes a very large sponsorship donation to the Framingham Downtown Renaissance to help us execute the Six Mile Moment party at intersection of Concord and Waverly streets. Because Middlesex Savings Bank has no shareholders, the bank can focus on making downtown Framingham a better place to live and work.  We are so grateful for this commitment to downtown Framingham! Kudos to Ben and Jim for being so gracious and great to work with!
Thank you to CORE Fitness for being a downtown leader of fitness and fun! We're striving to create a community that values walking and living a healthy lifestyle.  We're so lucky to have your enthusiastic support!  We look forward to working together on future community-building events with your team.  Great job at the Mural Mile Road Race.
As CEO of the MetroWest Community Federal Credit Union, Joseph Mansour has been heavily involved in supporting Framingham's community events for several years.   This year, Mansour and his team supported the inaugural Mural Mile Road Race, and we are grateful that this downtown credit union backed an event held at the intersection of art and wellness!
DOWNTOWN AMBASSADOR
what it takes to be a game-changer
Brett is a Documentation and Project Manager at BNY Mellon Asset Servicing and serves on the Boards of Directors at the Framingham Public Library and Framingham History Center.
"I do Yelp and TripAdvisor reviews of the downtown restaurants, and I do a blog about Framingham that has a lot of downtown-related posts (http://framhamster.blogspot.com/). One of my current quests is to boost downtown's visibility as a craft beer mecca - my Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter accounts help with that."  
MURAL MILE
funding public arts projects in downtown Framingham
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