guided by a vision of what Downtown can be

The Downtown Garner Association is the foremost advocate for Main Street’s economic revitalization and charged with casting a vision for its future – one that is borne out of asset-based economic development strategies, market analysis, community input, and a long term public-private commitment to downtown revitalization.  

our Vision Statement

Developed with feedback from downtown stakeholders in cooperation with the Downtown Garner Association and the North Carolina Main Street Center.  This vision statement is an integral part of DGA’s annual strategic plan  for downtown economic revitalization.  It builds off of existing community assets, key partnerships, and the commitment of the Town of Garner.

Historic Downtown Garner connects our small town roots with our future as a growing crossroads of cultural arts, recreation, and creative entrepreneurship in the community.

Through private development, public investment, and historic preservation, we’re expanding our downtown to become the destination for local flavor and flair in Garner.

History & Context

of Downtown Revitalization

Historic Downtown Garner Plan

In 2009, a public-private partnership between the Town of Garner and the Garner Revitalization Association (now DGA) led to development of the Historic Downtown Garner Plan, a strategic economic development guide for downtown revitalization.

The HDGP had three objectives: 1) to facilitate a market-based planning approach to enhance the Downtown Area from Vandora Springs to Jones Sausage Road, 2) to create a community-based vision  to guide the character of future development in Downtown Garner, and 3) to develop an Action Plan to guide GRA and the Town of Garner over the next 10 years including public investment and phasing strategies.

By 2015, the town and GRA had set in motion or implemented all feasible tasks identified in the HDGP, including development and passage of downtown and parks bond proposals in 2013; key infrastructure investments in stormwater, transportation, sidewalk, and streetscape improvements; and perhaps most importantly, the construction of a brand new 40,000 sq. foot Recreation Center on Main Street to serve as a civic anchor to the historic business district.  The Recreation Center will open in 2019 and is expected to be a key player in the next phase of development for Downtown Garner.

Garner Forward Comprehensive Plan

Participating in development of the town’s Garner Forward Comprehensive Plan was a natural next step from the Historic Downtown Garner Plan.  Comprehensive plans are intended to provide a long-range vision for land development and redevelopment opportunities, community infrastructure decisions, and community image. Several past and present DGA board members served on the steering committee for Garner Forward and provided input to help shape future development surrounding Downtown Garner.

With a $9 million public investment in a new 40,000 sq. ft. recreation center and support for an active community-driven Main Street program, Downtown Garner was added as one of Garner Forward’s five opportunity sites  DGA’s Downtown Development committee worked with consultants to update renderings from the HDGP. These visuals are already being used to cast vision for Downtown and will help encourage the type of high density, mixed use retail, restaurant, and office space that DGA would like to see in the next phase of downtown redevelopment.