Our history. On May 22, 2004, a group of ninety downtown stakeholders, including residents, business owners, property owners, and community-based organizations met at the Icehouse in Phoenix’s Warehouse District to discuss downtown planning and the effect of future development efforts on their neighborhoods, businesses, and quality of life. The purpose of the meeting was to engage in a process whereby revitalization of downtown could be discussed from various viewpoints.

Stakeholders engaged in a highly interactive discussion to better understand their neighbors’ and communities’ thoughts on a wide array of social, economic, physical, and political issues. The outcome of this discussion resulted in a comprehensive document, “Downtown Voices: Creating a Sustainable Downtown.” The document, summarized in the Priority Issues section of this site, has been well received by all who have reviewed and studied it.

On January 16, 2010, Downtown Voices Coalition and a broad-based group of downtown community leaders and residents reconvened at the A.E. England Building to assess progress and determine initiatives for future focus. This update recaps progress for major downtown initiatives since 2004, and illuminates issues and opportunities that still need attention.

How we’re organized. Downtown Voices Coalition is led by Chair Jeff Sherman, Vice Chair Andie Abkarian, Treasurer Louisa Stark, and Secretary Jim McPherson. Other Steering Committee Members are Erick Baer, Jennifer Boucek, Ryan Boyd, Kyle Foxcroft, Kim Kasper, Louise Roman, Nate Sonoskey, Tim Sprague, and Steve Weiss. All help to oversee the work of committees, keep the organization “humming,” and evaluate its progress. The group always welcomes people to bring an issue to the table, serve on the Steering Committee, or simply join in the discussion.

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