When we go somewhere, we aren't just looking at the shops. We are critiquing, admiring and speculating over features like trash cans, wayfinding signage, cleanliness, the ratio of retail to restaurant to business to residents, population density and more. Our mission is Downtown revitalization in this age of pervasive suburbia, so we like to see what other Downtowns are doing and how we can apply that to our own. It was my first industry conference, and though I handle the digital side of our marketing, which was sparsely covered, there was still a lot to learn and a lot of ideas to bring back.
The opening reception was held at the Nascar Hall of Fame, a place I did not think I would ever darken the doorway of. While not a Nascar fan, I do have a soft spot for old cars, and it was neat to see the restored grand dames of racing from the 50s and 60s. The closing reception was held at a trio of art galleries, which was really fabulous. Charlotte was just a gorgeous Downtown - vibrant nightlife, thriving restaurants and just really clean and well maintained.
|A cool pocket park devoted to literature|
|The exterior of the modern art museum|