Harrington area approved as one of five new Downtown Development Districts

SMYRNA – Harrington Mayor Anythony Moyer said the city is very honored after hearing it can now continue its business of growing the town with a portion of it now designated as a Delaware Downtown Development District.

“Harrington is very honored to accept the Governor’s Downtown Development District Designation and I feel this is exactly what Harrington needs to jumpstart its Downtown Revitalization,” he said.

Delaware Governor Jack Markell made the announcement Wednesday to expand the statewide program which previously only included Wilmington, Seaford and Dover as having designated downtown development districts.

“The Downtown Development Districts program already is driving major investment in our cities, from Market Street in Wilmington to the banks of the Nanticoke River in Seaford,” said Governor Jack Markell. “More Delawareans than ever want to live and work in walkable, urban areas. This expansion will help meet that demand by encouraging private development of downtown areas statewide.”

Along with the new designation for Milford, Harrington, Smyrna, Georgetown and Laurel, the towns can now boast the incentives given through the program.

The application also required each town to develop its own, city-specific incentives to help drive residents and new businesses to their area.

To decide which municipality would have the next Downtown Development Districts, each application was reviewed by the Delaware’s Office of State Planning Coordination and scored on the need for DDD incentives, the jurisdiction’s downtown revitalization plan and the creativity of its incentive package.

Mayor Moyer said,”The City recently adopted a Downtown Development District Plan with input from the community, various organizations, downtown businesses and a Downtown Task Force with support from the City Council and Planning Commission. The Plan would not have been possible without the Neighborhood Building Blocks Grant Fund.”

“A special thanks to our City Manager, Teresa Tieman, and her staff, as well as Debbie Pfeil and Lauren Good of KCI Technologies, Inc. for leading the efforts with these initiatives and the very competitive designation applicatio.”

The program, administered by the Delaware State Housing Authority, began in early 2015 to help grow local municipalities in new and unique ways thanks to legislation proposed by Governor Markell.

According to state officials, $14 million in state grant funding leveraged more than $290 million of private investments between the DDD’s in Wilmington, Seaford and Dover.

Director of the Delaware State Housing Authority Anas Ben Addi said, “We’re thrilled to work with homeowners, developers, and small business owners to drive investment in all of the newly-designated districts, This program is working, and we’ve seen the proof in Wilmington, Dover and Seaford. We look forward to even more progress statewide.”

Mayor Moyer added, “The city recently approved five District specific incentives and ten other citywide incentives, created several development resources, and ensured infrastructure was in place. With this designation, our Downtown is certain to prosper, maintain its character, and be the center of our community.

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