What we do at Historic Downtown Poteau, inc.:
- Rehabilitation of the Downtown District: Accomplished through beautification projects, placemaking, and other visual upgrades.
- Infrastructure planning and improvements: Includes conducting studies and surveys to physical planning and implementation of projects in order to improve ease of access throughout the downtown district.
- Building Rehabilitation: Providing grants, information, and planning in order to assist with modernizing buildings while at the same time preserving their architectural history.
- Business recruiting: Provide literature about the downtown environment and recruit through promotions and personal visits in order to bring new businesses downtown.
- Business retention: Assist struggling businesses downtown through marketing, business development (through SCORE and REI), visual merchandising, and other avenues. Basic services are offered to all businesses in the region. For those located in downtown, we offer more intermediate services. For our members, both downtown and throughout Poteau, we offer the fullest range of business services we offer.
- Analytics: Research and keep readily available demographics of downtown, including things such as traffic counts, business inventories, and so on.
- Maintain an online presence: Through SEO and affiliations with other state and national organizations, we continue to push Poteau tourism and development online. By marketing outside of Poteau, that draws in new business and new visitors to the area, which helps increase local revenues.
Events and Promotions
- Host multi-cultural events and festivals that serve three purposes: 1. Promote both Poteau and the downtown district, 2. Raise funding for ongoing operations and program expenses, and 3. Provide safe activities and entertainment for the area.
- Host smaller events that help bring people downtown and provide fun activities for people to participate in.
- Host retail sales promotions, contests, and giveaways.
- Provide continuing activities throughout the downtown district.
- We work with a variety of different organizations to improve the quality of life for all of Poteau. With programs such as TANF, AARP, and Community Service, our focus is to provide those workers with real-world job experience as well as to be a mentor to help provide them with tools for success.
- We assist various other non-profit entities through information sharing, promotions, and organizational development.
- Through the Farmer’s Market and the Walk Downtown Poteau campaigns, we encourage healthy lifestyles through education, awareness, and resource management.
Areas we cover:
The downtown district essentially runs from Broadway to the KCS Railroad and roughly two blocks north and south. We maintain and develop the PUBLIC points of access in an effort to assist the City of Poteau in the maintenance and revitalization of those areas. Unless granted specific permission, we do NOT cover areas that are not city owned, such as buildings, private parking lots, and so on.
Areas not covered:
- It is up to the building owners to maintain their properties. Through the Facade program, building owners may grant us permission to assist in restoring the facade of the building, such as painting and signage, however, it is up to each individual building owner to maintain their buildings to a level that meets city code.
- Rental and Sales Properties: We provide a list of such properties, but are not responsible for businesses that choose to set up shop downtown. The building owners are responsible for interviewing each applicant and providing for their lease/sale. The only time HDP steps in is if there is a code violation (Commercial-1 District), then that is reported the city code enforcement officer. Once a businesses is established, we provide the basic business services as outlined below.
- With Economic Development, primarily business retention and recruiting, unless specifically requested, we may only provide information and access to resources. If requested, we can do work for the business based on their level; basic, intermediate, and advanced. While we provide education, we do not complete the tasks for individual businesses, such as business planning and financial planning.
- Basic Services include providing contacts to resources such as how to start a business (IRS, Secretary of State) or services as provided by SCORE or REI. This is offered to anyone in Poteau.
- Intermediate services that we offer to all downtown include resources as mentioned above, basic marketing, basic visual merchandising, and so on.
- Advanced services that we offer to our members include individual one-on-one support with all of the above, plus business, financial, and market planning, as well as more in-depth advertising and providing advertising options.
If you have questions regarding specific areas we cover, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Thank you for your support!