A SID is a structured method of raising funds in a geographical area in order to manage and deliver critical services above the level of services provided by local government. It allows neighbors and property owners to create a sustainable funding source for maintaining safety and cleanliness of a given neighborhood. The property owners within a designated Improvement District decide what kind and what level of management services they need, and exert direct control over the delivery of those services through the adoption of a Services Plan and Budget.
For the Services Plan and Budget to be approved, state statute requires signatures from property owners representing at least 60% of the front footage OR 75% of the assessed value inside the proposed district.
The first DCID Services Plan was approved in 1997 and outlined the activities funded from 1998-2001. DCID has since been renewed six times, with the most recent Services Plan and Budget being approved for renewal in 2021. The new Services Plan and Budget, which was approved by more than 75% of property owners by front footage, will be in effect from 2022-2025.
DCID provides funds that are used to carry out a Services Plan, which is executed by a contractor selected to provide the services. Since its inception, DCID has contracted with Downtown Cincinnati (DC) – a subsidiary of Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. (3CDC) since 2019 – to carry out the Services Plan. The organization is focused on making Cincinnati’s urban core a vibrant, dynamic metropolitan center valued as the heart of the region. DCI delivers its mission by providing services in three areas:
- Maintaining and enhancing a clean, safe, and welcoming environment downtown, including the recognized Downtown Ambassador program (visible in bright green shirts), with great attention to detail and quick response.
- Maintaining and enhancing the image, awareness and usage of downtown as a vibrant hub of activity through strategic marketing and communications, including proactive media relations, engaging social media messaging and email marketing, and the production of free Downtown events to drive traffic and increase vibrancy.
- Advocate for and support business and residential growth downtown through stakeholder services programs and serving as the primary source of downtown data collection and distribution to stakeholders by providing the State of Downtown report.