Client:  City of Lincoln (CA)

The City of Lincoln and its Redevelopment Agency asked GG+A to evaluate the demand for space and activities in Downtown Lincoln and identify strategic marketing, planning and policy-related actions that build upon and enhance the Downtown’s strengths given the anticipated completion of the Highway 65 bypass.

To complete the market analysis and strategic plan, GG+A inspected the Downtown and conducted interviews with 44 property owners, developers, real estate brokers, office space users, retailers and restaurant operators, industrial businesses located in or near Downtown, as well as representatives of the Chamber of Commerce, the Economic Development Committee for both the City and County, City staff and officials. GG+A designed a merchant customer survey and analyzed the results of the survey. GG+A analyzed sales data and demographic and income characteristics of market area households, and prepared purchasing power estimates for retail goods and services. GG+A converted estimates of purchasing power or retail demand into estimates of the supportable amount of on-the-ground retail space and obtained estimates of the supply of retail space and identified the relationship between estimated retail demand and supply. GG+A also evaluated the potential for office and residential uses.

GG+A synthesized the results of the primary and secondary research and analysis and field inspections in order to reach conclusions about the potential opportunities and constraints affecting demand for land uses and activities in Downtown Lincoln and to identify strategic action recommendations to improve the capacity for serving market opportunities and enhancing the Downtown environment.

GG+A developed the “what”, “why”, and “how” of a branding vision, message and strategy for Downtown and described the policy and marketing actions and tools needed to carry out the branding strategy. Recommendations related to nurturing and incubating existing and new businesses through development of an economic gardening program, reducing and deferring fees for unique and experiential businesses, holding a contest to attract unique businesses and activities, and a variety of organizational and policy recommendations geared to making the review and approval process for development, property remodeling and opening and operating a business more user-friendly. GG+A also identified and described specific recommendations related to enhancing public realm maintenance, transportation linkages, and parking alternatives and way-faring and signage. Other recommendations concerned improving and increasing events Downtown with specific types of events and programs described and information on examples of press releases, promotional materials and related information provided. GG+A identified how to use historic features authentic to the community and a process to galvanize community support as part of the branding program. In addition, GG+A made specific recommendations related to advertising and publicity and for creating a comprehensive Internet presence. The report described the relevance of the strategic policy, marketing, physical environment enhancement, including parking-related recommendations for executing the brand vision and delivering on the brand promise.

GG+A reviewed the findings, conclusions and strategic recommendations with a “strategic doings” group and helped organize the group to begin implementing the recommendations. GG+A in conjunction with the strategic doings group will present the strategic action plan and implementation actions already accomplished to the City Council.

A copy of the final report is available on the City’s website: “Market Analysis and Strategic Action Plan for Downtown Lincoln)