New Improvements Coming to Downtown Soon

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – County commissioners voted in favor of a Business Improvement District, also known as BID, Tuesday.

BID is a partnership between private citizens and local governments in which business owners chose to increase taxes.

Josh Rogers, President & CEO of NewTown Macon, worked with his team to lead a campaign for BID.

“Our hope is just to make the downtown area experience a lot more comfortable fun and filling from the moment you get out of your car, or show up on bike or on foot to the moment that you leave downtown,” Rogers said.

 

Rogers and his team put together a team of property owners who volunteered to talk to other property owners to support the district.

The BID needed 51 percent of property owners to approve the proposal.

The improvements BID will be used for have not been confirmed, but NewTown Macon pitched an idea for a work plan.

“Basically that will allow us to hire 5 full time people to work as safety ambassadors and a clean team,” Rogers said. “Those people can deter nuisance crimes, they can provide advice and directions for tourist and visitors, they can direct homeless people to the resources that are available, they can deter panhandling, and they can fix things on the spot.”

Richie Jones, Property and Business Owner in Downtown, said the proposal will help bring more people downtown.

“I think it will encourage more tourist people to come down and definitely more businesses,” Jones said.

He said the new fund will help with any issues they have downtown.

“I think that’s good that the money is staying in our area, where we’re actually producing the revenue,” Jones said. “I think that’s better for downtown because then it can go to the specific issues or stuff that we need to be fixed.”

Rogers said he is confident that BID will help with the revitalization of Macon.

“Districts tend to provide tremendous benefits for the public by raising property values for everyone and for the property owners within the district by getting them higher rent rates and higher occupancy rates,” he said. “We’re expecting this program is going to provide a lot of benefits obvious to everybody.”

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