Last week City Councilmember Robert Zwolak suggested that Conant businesses should consider creating a Downtown Development Authority for their business district.
We think that’s an excellent idea.
Thanks largely to the Bengali community, Conant has become a thriving area for businesses. Twenty years ago, Conant had fallen on hard times and had become seedy and abandoned.
The Bengali community saw a void and filled it. The area is now informally known as “Banglatown.” The business district has been getting increasing attention by local media, and now would be a key time to step it up.
Creating a DDA will bring businesses together and help unify the area. Certainly there are needs for this area, and a DDA is the perfect vehicle to make sure those needs are heard and acted upon.
A DDA will also map out a development plan for Conant. While the Bengali community has made a significant contribution to Conant, more diversity is needed. There is a glut of the same kinds of businesses.
We encourage local officials to team up with business leaders to unify the district, and establish a DDA.