What is the mission of the Canton Development Partnership?

Formed in 2000, the Canton Development Partnership, a department of the Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce, is a coalition of area development organizations and city government that share an interest in downtown Canton’s continual improvement, revitalization, image and quality of life for its citizens. Its mission is to support and coordinate the activities and programs of its partnering organizations to encourage and sustain community and economic development in downtown Canton.The partnering organizations include Canton Regional Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Canton Special Improvement District Inc., Downtown Canton Land Bank Corp., Canton Tomorrow and the city of Canton.The Chamber holds individual contracts with the Land Bank, Canton Tomorrow and SID for management services. The Canton Development Partnership was created to unite these partnering organizations and take advantage of their organizational and development capabilities in downtown. The program includes marketing and communication, cultural tourism, downtown festivals, economic development/downtown revitalization, business retention, development and planning and facilitating new projects and redevelopment. The Canton Development Partnership also provides information technology integration and web access to a database of downtown businesses and services.

What is the Downtown Canton Land Bank?

A 501(c)(3) formed in 1998, the mission of the Land Bank is to acquire, assemble and dispose of land within the city of Canton’s central business district and surrounding areas to facilitate downtown real estate development. During the past 15 years, the Downtown Canton Land Bank board has purchased numerous properties in downtown Canton. Many of these properties were in disrepair. The Land Bank has renovated a number of these buildings to the point that they are now productive properties and contribute to the economic growth of downtown.

What is Canton Tomorrow?

Canton Tomorrow is a public/private partnership to bring together the vision, initiative and action necessary for the continuing revitalization of downtown Canton. The nonprofit group boosts downtown through sustaining the community’s sense of history, self-image and quality of life.

What is the Special Improvement District?

The Special Improvement District board is responsible for downtown aesthetics, downtown activities, downtown planning and economic development. The beautification of the center of the city includes planting flowers in more than 50 flowerbeds downtown. For the past 10 years, the organization has worked to coordinate volunteers who donate their time and efforts to make downtown look its best throughout the summer. Banners are hung throughout the city to promote upcoming events, celebrate the seasons and raise awareness of civic and cultural organizations in the SID. The SID has increased police presence in the downtown areas to provide a sense of wellbeing to downtown visitors. More than 2,100 feet of new streetscape sidewalks were added in 2012, which included brick inlays, trees and ornamental light posts. The SID adopted the North and South Plaza areas to ensure that the areas are well-maintained. The group also has been instrumental in creating a downtown master plan, assisting companies/businesses in locating downtown, in addition to several community events.

If someone wants to get involved, how can they help?

There are opportunities to volunteer at all downtown events and special projects such as Color Downtown, Taste of Canton, Blues Festival, 4th Street Concerts, Vintage Canton and Light Up Downtown. For information, email Annette Rosenberger at annette@cantonchamber.org or call 330-458-2092.

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