There was a group, but they were inactive. Now, the City Commission has appointed a new Downtown Development Authority and the weight of downtown Dothan’s progression now rest on their shoulders.
"This is an entity that will put together financing plans, they will hear questions from interested investors as to, 'Can we do this?' They will come up with incentives packages that will make downtown look good," explains Dothan Mayor Pat Thomas.
All seven members were handpicked by city commissioners through a rigorous selection process.
City officials say it is important the authority's members don't have property in the area, but do have a love for downtown.
Mitch Kirkland is one of those members and says it’s vital to get downtown Dothan back to the way it once was, as the areas central hub. "When you have people from other areas come to your downtown it's a reflection of the pride you have in your community and right now, we're not showing a lot of pride because we've allowed our downtown to deteriorate. So what we've got to do is come together as a community,” he said Tuesday.
Meanwhile, leaders feel good about the selections and are ready to move forward to a better downtown Dothan.
"I'll be looking to them for new ideas and new approaches for the redevelopment we're going to do in our historic district," said Cathy Cole, who is The Downtown Groups Director.
A date has not been set for when the seven member board will meet.
The names of the members for the Downtown Development Authority are as follows: