Host of the 2012 Kansas Downtown Symposium Emporia, Kansas
The Founding of Emporia Named for a market center in Greece, Emporia was founded in 1857, and was described as the “loveliest site in the world for a town”
Development through the Years Emporia expanded with the arrival of the railroad and State Normal School in the 1870’s • The 1960’s brought shopping malls and an alternate shopping area which paved the way for Big Box Development. • Higher paying jobs were lost in the 1980’s due to a hospital closure, office relocation and the completion of a regional development project. • Losses in jobs, population and increased sales competition from other areas of Emporia contributed to soaring downtown vacancy rates.
Challenges that brought about Emporia Main Street • Sprawl • Vacancies • Lack of Vision • Need for Change • Downtown Association • Accountability • Downtown is Emporia’s “Living Room”
Who We are • 24,000 pop. • 55,000 Trade Market Area • Diverse Demographics • Entrepreneurial • “Goldilocks” Community • Emporia is a transportation hub at the intersection of many highways and rail conduits.
Rand McNally Founded in 1954 Alvin King, Senator Ed Rees & President Eisenhower Veteran’s day
The Arts • Engraving • Glass Blowing • Music • Water Color • Metal Work • Digital • Theatre
The Flint Hills Day Lilly City, Iris Parks Trails A truly great outdoors • Agriculture • Hunting/Fishing • National Park
The Dirty Kanza- Video The Glass Blown Open- Video Alternative Sports • Dirty Kanza- 350 Pros • Glass Blown Open- 700
Inventions Famous People A number of “Firsts” Innovations
The Biggest Small Town Anywhere • A LOT of Activities & Selection year Round • Still able to maintain a small town charm/feel.
Youth Take- Video Growing Events CID Focus Fun Events, New Businesses & Developments! • New Businesses & New Developments in a vibrant community.
Emporia welcomes you! • October 17, 18 and 19th of 2012 • Fun events planned for everyone! • Get an up close look at our programs. • We will see YOU in EMPORIA!