The Town Square Initiative is comprised of a professional team with expertise in architecture, economic development, and city planning. TSI accepts requests for assistance for unoccupied and underutilized properties on an ongoing basis from any community currently participating in the agency's programs. Endangered properties may receive priority.
TSI services include the following:
- This study assists property owners and public officials in evaluating the redevelopment potential of a historic property.
- Typically includes a review of local development barriers and market conditions, a re-use plan with renderings, an operating pro-forma, and gap financing recommendations. Most studies emphasize the use of the state and federal historic preservation tax credit programs.
- Example: Texas Theater Feasibility Study, Kingsville
- A property owner must be able to establish in their request that there is sufficient local capacity to move a project forward. A strong application will demonstrate an existing community preservation ethic, the ability of the project to enhance the quality of place in downtown, a potential market to sustain a new use and support from public officials. Applications are required to be jointly completed by a property owner and local government designee.
Downtown Strategy Plan
- This is a specialized downtown planning report with program and policy recommendations to comprehensively address local barriers to redevelopment and reinvestment in downtown.
- Example: Downtown Strategy Report, Mount Vernon
- TSI expects to be working long-term and at a high level of expertise with one or two communities a year. Ideal applicants will be smaller, more rural towns who have recently restored their courthouse with assistance from the Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program and are poised to continue their revitalization efforts through a coordinated downtown strategy.