Downtown Strategic Vision Report

City Council and staff have put a renewed focus on downtown Fillmore. The City hired Retail Strategies in July 2022 to prepare a 5-year strategic vision for Downtown Fillmore. The focus of the vision is to enhance and accelerate the current revitalization efforts occurring downtown and provide a shared vision. 

Partnership with Retail Strategies

The first year of our partnership included three phases of the Downtown Strategies process: Discover, Connect, and Advance. The Discover Phase included Retail Strategies gathering information about the community, reviewing existing plans and projects, and conducting Market Analysis research. The Connect Phase included a market visit for Retail Strategies team to conduct a Strategic Visioning Workshop, a walking tour, and Stakeholder Input Session. Finally, the Advance Phase included utilizing the team’s observations to prepare a proposed 5-Year Strategic Vision for our downtown and to assist the businesses to begin the Implementation Jumpstart process.

Strategic Visioning Workshop - August 2022

The Downtown Strategies team visited Fillmore on August 16, 2022. During the visit, the team met with the city staff, conducted a walking tour of the downtown area, and facilitated a Stakeholder Input Session in the Fillmore Council Chambers. The Stakeholder Input Session included elected officials, community organization representatives, property owners, business owners, and active volunteers. The participants were led through a facilitated discussion where they provided input for the future of downtown.

Strategic Vision: 5-Year Strategic Plan - Initial Draft Delivered to the City: October 2022

Final Document Presented to Council: January 2023

Following the Discover phase and the Strategic Visioning Workshop, the Downtown Strategies team collaboratively developed the 5-year strategic plan for Downtown Fillmore. The asset-based, and market-driven plan is organized around Downtown Strategies’ 5 Pillars of downtown revitalization: Market Analysis; Policy and Administration; Design; Tourism and Promotion; and Economic Vitality. The team identified multiple short-term strategies within each pillar and categorized them within Now, 1-3 Year, and 3-5 Year timeframes. Downtown Strategies also provided an Action Planning Workbook, which is a resource designed to take the plan from ideas to action.

Implementation Jumpstart - February 2023 - July 2023

Following the delivery of the Strategic Plan, the partnership can now shift into the Implementation Jumpstart phase which occurs over a six-month period. This phase involves the Downtown Strategies team providing technical assistance, resources, and support through regular Zoom calls with City staff as they incorporate projects and initiatives from the Strategic Plan into their existing work plans. The Implementation Jumpstart also includes a Downtown Real Estate Analysis and virtual Property Owner Training. The property owner training will be coordinated between FAB, Retail Strategies, and the City. FAB and the City will provide notification of the training to the business community. Additionally, the City will select one strategy from the plan that will be led and developed by the Downtown Strategies team.

The staff has met with Seam McCulley, President of the Fillmore Association of Businesses (FAB), to review the Strategic Plan and will be working with FAB and the City Council Economic Development Committee to identify and prioritize the recommendations in the report.