A River District renaissance

The city of Danville and Danville Regional Foundation are working together to bring about a renaissance of Danville’s River District — an area spanning from Ridge Street to Riverside Drive and Poplar Street to the Carrington Pavilion. But we need the involvement of more people in this critical effort.

In these tough times, why should you care about the River District? The answer is that the Dan River and the River District are what distinguish Danville from thousands of other communities in competing to attract new residents and businesses. With many of Danville’s oldest, most architecturally attractive and significant buildings, it’s key to our heritage and sense of community. It’s the most important gathering place for community events. The impression both residents and outsiders have of the River District is projected on the community as a whole.

In addition, as we look around the Southeast, the communities that are experiencing rebirth have strong downtowns — Lynchburg, Greenville, S.C., and in North Carolina, Durham and New Bern. These vibrant urban centers, and the amenities they offer, have become the hub for activity in attracting a talented workforce. This has produced a clear competitive advantage in recruiting and retaining young people and businesses.

Our downtown — our River District — is indeed fortunate to be on a beautiful river near which we have an abundance of historic buildings yearning for revitalization. This infrastructure will become our competitive advantage as we seek to recruit new economy businesses and workers to the Dan River Region.

Over the past year, the River District has experienced much progress. More importantly, many of you have shown your support and interest by attending and giving input during planning activities and public meetings.