Keeping the Doors Open: Commercial District Management Organizations

Gary Sands, Laura A. Reese, Pierre Filion


Commercial district organizations have been established to enhance public services, area appearance, security and economic viability. The research reported here examines two common models of commercial business district organizations, Downtown Development Authorities (DDAs) in Michigan and Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) in Canada. DDAs and BIAs typically have similar operational profiles, including marketing campaigns, events to bring customers to the area, beautification projects and member services. There are important differences, however. Business development activities are a higher priority among BIAs while capital improvements are the highest priority for DDAs. A mature DDA may face the “problem” of determining how the available funds should be spent; BIAs must find funds for the projects that they wish to undertake.

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International Business Research  ISSN 1913-9004 (Print), ISSN 1913-9012 (Online)

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