What We Do

Unfortunately, there is not a silver-bullet solution that will solve all the problems that a downtown faces throughout its lifetime. However, what we do know is, that a downtown is a complex organism with many moving parts. Therefore, a dynamic comprehensive approach has to be custom-designed to address downtown Rock Island’s needs.


To best prepare our downtown for future success, we must preserve our historic and cultural heritage while also embracing an ever-changing environment. We must be tolerant of all people, inclusive of every business person and ensure we provide each of them with greatest chance for success. As the highest-trafficked space in the city, an emphasis on aesthetics, cleanliness and safety must be a top priority. Lastly, our buildings, streets and shared spaces must also accommodate a variety of uses and needs.


While it may seem like everyone is somehow connected by today’s technologies, a renewed effort will also need to be made in order to raise awareness of the area itself, as well as informing and educating our residents, community stakeholders and visitors on what is happening in downtown through various mediums.


Below are the main activities of a 9-point approach to aid in synchronizing a revitalization strategy in downtown Rock Island. On the following page, you will find a detailed outline of each activity.


Ensuring downtown is a priority.

  • Meet with local, state & federal officials.
  • Attend + facilitate roundtables, town halls & demonstrations.
  • Recommend suggestions to improve regulations, design guidelines & ordinances.


Putting downtown on the map.

  • Work with agencies, specialists & providers.
  • Invite community participation through design competitions, tours & social media takeovers.
  • Produce a quality guidebook, map + website.

Real Estate

Building places & redeveloping spaces.

  • Connect with brokers, realtors & developers.
  • Host educational seminars, designer showcases & open houses.
  • Highlight listings, develop incubators & establish business-friendly contract agreements.


Empowering small businesses & entrepreneurs.

  • Network with area chamber, economic development & business service providers.
  • Program workshops, mentoring & creative pop-up opportunities.
  • Streamline access to resources, financial incentives & survey results.


Delivering news & updates.

  • Broadcast the message of downtown with media groups.
  • Deliver interesting content through spotlights, conversations & frequent coverage.
  • Post regularly on social media, handout informational flyers + print a stimulating magazine.


Creating a sensory experience of downtown.

  • Engage active community groups, nonprofits & students.
  • Plan builds, plantings + projects for increased impact on targeted blocks.
  • Install demonstrated improvements in vacant spaces, street infrastructure & storefronts.


Establishing critical stakeholder relationships.

  • Develop mutually beneficial links to civic, educational & cultural institutions.
  • Solidify industry sectors with startup expos & talent fairs.
  • Create new financial avenues for membership, media & project contributions.


Hosting signature events + collaborations.

  • Align efforts with currently planned events & activities.
  • Collaborate with businesses to support their promotions.
  • Execute long-standing events, partner with existing downtown events & help launch new events.


Exhibiting the highest standards of excellence.

  • Aid public works, property owners & business owners with scheduled maintenance.
  • Perform cleanups, regular safety walks & transportation spot-checks.
  • Assist with landscaping needs & ensure waste removal.