Lynch’s Landing is an accredited program of Virginia Main Street and the National Main Street Center™, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. As the 2006 recipient of the Great American Main Street award – the nation’s highest honor for Main Street communities – the City of Lynchburg is a leader in this national movement. For more than a decade, the organization and the City of Lynchburg have worked together to sustain and develop Downtown and the Riverfront as a vital economic, cultural, recreational, residential, and historic center for our community.
Across the country downtowns are rebounding and rapidly changing. From 1980 to 2012, more than $55.7 billion has been reinvested in downtown districts nationwide from public and private sources. Here in Lynchburg, we have seen more than $110 million in private investment since 2000.
The results have been remarkable – new businesses are opening, investors are putting their money into once vacant buildings, visitors are spending time in new shops and restaurants, and residents are enjoying renewed community pride. Right now there are approximately 282 businesses in the Central Business District with more than 4,500 employees. The number of downtown businesses has increased by more than 205 percent in ten years.
In the past year, 75 new residential units were developed in Downtown with five projects currently moving forward to add an estimated 155 additional units. By 2014, Downtown Lynchburg will have witnessed a 48% increase in the number of residential units in just four years. By the end of 2014, the Bluffwalk will transform the way we move through Downtown Lynchburg and is already opening up a new corridor for restaurant, retail and residential development.
As an organization, we are well positioned to tackle new and recurring challenges to developing Downtown Lynchburg. Lynch’s Landing will continue to be the voice and ambassador for downtown Lynchburg, promoting the cultural resources and business community of downtown.
Our staff, committees and volunteers center our work around five priorities, using the successful Main Street Four Point Approach:
Main Street Four Point Approach
Design means getting Main Street into top physical shape and creating a safe, inviting environment for shoppers, workers, and visitors. It takes advantage of the visual opportunities inherent in a commercial district by directing attention to all of its physical elements: public and private buildings, storefronts, signs, public spaces, parking areas, street furniture, public art, landscaping, merchandising, window displays, and promotional materials.
Create and market a positive image based on the unique attributes of our downtown. Lynch’s Landing works to educate the community on why downtown revitalization makes economic sense, to correct misconceptions of downtown safety, and utilizes all forms of media to spread the word about exciting things that happen downtown.
Strengthen the community’s existing economic assets while diversifying its economic base. This is accomplished by retaining and expanding successful businesses to provide a balanced commercial mix, sharpening the competitiveness and merchandising skills of business owners, and attracting new businesses that the market can support. Converting unused or underused commercial space into economically productive property also helps boost the profitability of the district. The goal is to build a commercial district that responds to the needs of today’s consumers.
Establish consensus and cooperation by building effective partnerships among all downtown stakeholders and the citizens of Lynchburg. Successful downtown revitalization is a collaborative effort.