Seaford, Dover and Wilmington Selected For Downtown Revitalizati - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Seaford, Dover and Wilmington Selected For Downtown Revitalization

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WILMINGTON, Del. – The downtown areas of Seaford, Dover and Wilmington are getting a boost from the state government.

These cities have been selected for designation as Downtown Development Districts, Governor Jack Markell announced Monday.

The DDD program is the latest effort in the state's commitment to help revitalize downtowns and surrounding neighborhoods in Delaware's neediest areas. The first three DDDs were required to include one per county.

“The Downtown Development District program has generated a high level of enthusiasm and interest, and I was impressed by the overall quality of the applications submitted,” said Governor Markell. “In addition to demonstrating significant need, each of the winning applicants submitted thoughtful plans with detailed strategies to strengthen neighborhoods, spur private investment, and improve housing opportunities for residents of all walks of life. On behalf of the state, I look forward to working in partnership with the winning applicants as they make their plans a reality.”

The DDD program is a result of legislation Gov. Markell proposed that the General Assembly unanimously passed last year. All designated districts will be entitled to receive significant development incentives and other benefits to spur investment and community development. The program is partly modeled after a Virginia program that successfully garnered private investments in underserved areas of that state.

The winners were selected from a pool of nine applicants. The applications were evaluated based on need and impact, quality of the district plan submitted by the applicant and local incentives offered.

One benefit of the program is a kickback for investors in DDDs. Those who make qualified real estate investments in designated districts will be entitled to receive grants of up to 20% off the cost of their investments.

Events to celebrate the designation and allow local officials to discuss the details of their plans will be held in each of the three designated districts this week as follows:

  • Monday, January 12th at 9:30 a.m., Seaford City Hall, 414 High Street, Seaford
  • Tuesday, January 13th at 11 a.m., Bayard Plaza, 200 W. Loockerman Street, Dover
  • Wednesday, January 14th at 9 a.m., DCAD, 600 N. Market Street, Wilmington

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