For six months in late 2015, local leaders in the Monmouth region were hard at work developing a Downtown Revitalization Plan to guide the community’s economic future. On November 6th, they submitted the plan, which will determine whether the Monmouth region (consisting of Monmouth and Roseville) will advance in the America’s Best Communities (ABC) national competition for a chance to win the contest’s $3 million grand prize.
The document below is a strategic plan for the continued revitalization of downtown Monmouth, Illinois. This plan begins at the end of a five year strategic effort entitled “Reimagining the Heart of Our Community.” This previous effort saw the improvement of over 16 downtown buildings and a “plus 18” growth in the number of retail and service businesses in our community and culminated in the Monmouth/Roseville region being named a quarterfinalist in the America’s Best Communities national competition.
A core group of community members and stakeholders have driven a large research effort into the needs and wishes of our community members, from online surveys to facetoface community engagement brainstorming sessions, as well as bringing in professional consultants to facilitate sales and demographic data research and essential downtown design.
The context of the current state of Monmouth (both social and economic) is defined by a number of core principles that provide the foundation upon which this strategic plan is built. The physical scope of this plan coincides with the boundaries of the Warren County Courthouse Commercial Historic District (recognized as a historic district on 2/1/2006). While this plan should be seen as a “living” document, it was written with a five year horizon in mind (slated for a major revision in late 2020).
This revitalization plan is based upon five primary pillars of action: Business Development, Arts and Culture, Physical Restoration, Community Development and Marketing. Each pillar represents a vital system in the overall economic ecosystem of Monmouth’s downtown.
The goal of this plan is to lay out a roadmap for the growing and nurturing of a healthy, vibrant and fun downtown ecosystem that is also a robust and sustaining economic engine for our region.