There is a revitalization going on in Camden! With a determined Council and citizens, the future is looking brighter and there is an understanding of and a determination for what is possible in our small town.
Whether the goal is to improve the external appearance of town, encourage and support new and existing businesses and commerce, or to rejuvenate a town to become a place where families what to live, work and play, our village Council and others like the new Camden Comeback non-profit organization and the town's citizenry are on the cusp of re-creating a town we can all be proud of and support.
In the Spring, 2019, the Camden Council prepared a RFP and commissioned a group of Miami University Urban and Regional Planning students to provide a strategic plan and vision for revitalizing Camden's downtown area.
According to the Final Plan presented to Council and citizens at the end of the months-long process, the Plan "highlights the rich history of Camden while creating a long term vision for success. It outlines potential strategies that are practical and achievable for revitalizing the downtown environment both economically and aesthetically. The plan considers demographics, technical analysis, best practices, and community input applied to a small town context."
The documents includes an overview of where we are and provides recommendations (including timeframes) for moving forward. The plan includes items the group recommended the village do right away and constructive suggestions for future projects.
We want to thank the students and professors who worked on this project, one that included multiple meetings with townspeople, research on the current state and history of our town, research on comparable towns/cities and a compilation of suggestions and recommendations that definitely gave us something to think about.
The Plan concludes with... "Downtown Camden is the heart of a charminG tight knit community. With a working Downtown Enhancement Plan, Camden has the opportunity to create a welcoming outward image for Camden to have success in attracting investment and applying for grants by displaying its commitment to a well organized and strategic revitalization and enhancement program that is grounded in sound research. However, it is to adapt to the needs of the community as they arise. This plan was designed with a combination of peer community best practices and local input and is meant to be a strong starting point that will hopefully serve as a useful and lasting guide for the enhancement and redevelopment of Camden’s downtown by Celebrating Camden."
Not all the recommendations may work for Camden right now and others may need to be altered for our use and budget. But, there is lots of great information and wonderful suggestions to get us thinking and planning. Let's do this!