The City Ave District team took the show on the road last week attending the 2023 International Downtown Association Conference in Chicago. It was a jam-packed three days of inspired conversation, purposeful networking and actionable insight into the evolution of downtowns.

Here’s our team’s key takeaways: 

1. Clean and Safe remain top priorities and fundamental elements to successful turnarounds for business improvement districts all across the country.

2. Placemaking is critical to sustained growth in many of our communities. People now, more than ever, are seeking opportunities to gather and enjoy themselves and ultimately spend money and time.

3. Philly’s own Paul Levy conducted a particularly insightful Master Talk showcasing robust research on the top 25 major cities and their return to downtown. View the report here:

4. We walked away with a fantastic book recommendation, Uneasy Peace, focusing on community policing and safety over the last decade. (thanks Alex Balloon)

5. Our team’s must-do while in Chicago was definitely the Wendella Architecture Boat Tour!

Many thanks to the International Downtown Association team for a great conference. We’re looking forward to next year’s event!