Celebrating 10 Years of Progress

It goes against human instinct to plan for growth when times are tough – especially during the worst recession in modern history. However, in Wichita we innovatively pursued success against the odds by creating Project Downtown: The Master Plan for Wichita in 2010. This plan is a 15-year community vision for economic development, and this year we celebrate 10 years of implementation by reflecting on the progress that has taken place.

Over the past decade, Project Downtown has driven over $1 billion of investment in the urban core. From the catalytic projects that set the plan in motion to the projects currently under construction or in planning - Project Downtown is becoming a reality in our city. 

The planning process was initiated in 2009 when Goody Clancy was selected as the planning design team. The private sector, the business community, downtown stakeholders and the Downtown Wichita non-profit organization joined in partnership with the public sector to lead and fund the plan. The Goody Clancy team included economists specializing in four key real estate markets:

The team identified Wichita’s market potential in each area and led a robust community engagement process in order to create the plan. This public input paired with deliberate, market-based strategies and key investment in infrastructure, transportation, streetscape and parks by the public sector has been vital to the transformation of our urban center.

"As we experience the difficulties of a new reality in 2020, we must keep an aspirational mindset just as we did in 2010. Our experience with Project Downtown shows that planning with future generations in mind is worth the reward."
- Joe Tigert, Chair of Downtown Wichita

The Downtown Wichita organization, through the leadership of its Board of Directors and staff, has served as the ongoing champion for the plan. This unique leadership role of the organization has built a partnership with the public sector, local lenders and the design and development community. This partnership has proven to be an integral necessity for the community to achieve the goals and forecasted outcomes of the plan.

As we step into the next five years of implementing the plan, we will continue to be resilient and diligent stewards of our community’s vision of a vibrant, thriving urban center. View the 2020 State of Downtown Report and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to learn more. 

Downtown Wichita receives international Pinnacle Award

Downtown Wichita received a 2020 Pinnacle Award from the International Downtown Association for the implementation of Project Downtown. The Pinnacle Award is the industry’s highest recognition and represents the most creative and inspiring innovations in urban place management.

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