People shaping places

(L-R) Tish Gehringer, CVA Program Manager, Amanda Elliott, Senior Program Officer and Director of California Programs, Christine Davis, CVA Executive Director, Gumaro Escarcega, California Main Street Board President

The Carlsbad Village Association (CVA) is most commonly known as the team that puts on great events in downtown Carlsbad including the State Street Farmers Market, Art in the Village, Taste of Carlsbad Village, Flicks at the Fountain, and others. They are also known as the team that hosts the bi-monthly Village Voices business and resident networking meetings and the ones who regularly advocate for the small downtown businesses at city council and through city staff. CVA also helps businesses find space to rent in the Village, navigate the permitting process, secure county grants, and more. Central to its mission is to incorporate best practices to help lead the continual improvement of Carlsbad Village to make it a premier destination.

In an effort to stay connected and be smart leaders for the downtown businesses, CVA’s Executive Director, Christine Davis, and Program Manager, Tish Gehringer, recently attended the California Main Street Conference called “A Vision For Success” in downtown Oceanside. CVA is proud to be a member of both California Main Street and Main Street America, two collaborative programs designed to revitalize downtowns and commercial districts through place-based economic development.

Since its inception over 30 years ago, California Main Street (CAMS) has worked with communities across the state that have collectively secured over $7.4 billion in public and private reinvestment, added 31,979 jobs, created 6,666 new businesses, and rehabilitated over 1,500 buildings since 1986.

CAMS is a diverse network of communities supported by Main Street Approach practitioners, working to revitalize historic commercial districts through a place-based model that fosters inclusive transformation strategies. They do this by providing training, access to resources, partnership opportunities, and best practices to its members and affiliates.

CAMS currently serves 31 member commercial districts in California and is part of Main Street America, a coast-to-coast network of organizations and individuals working to bring vitality and prosperity to more than 1,200 downtowns across the country through the framework of the Main Street Approach.

“This conference brought us together with other California main street association staff members and board members from Coronado to Richmond, for two days of training,” said Davis. “Topics ranging from California Cultural Districts to state policy and funding opportunities to housing and homelessness strategies was covered in 15 different sessions, all with the goal of advancing and enhancing our downtown business communities. Hearing from California State Assembly policy advisors, the Small Business Majority, Small Business Development Center directors, and networking with other main street associations will help us continue to fulfill our mission in downtown Carlsbad.”

CVA looks forward to traveling to Boston for the 2023 Main Street Now Conference later this month and sharing with the Carlsbad Village businesses the transformative strategies, practices, and methodologies it learns to help their businesses and downtown Carlsbad thrive.