Renew the Playhouse District
Act Now: Sign the
A Property-based Business Improvement District
- Why Reinvesting in the PBID Matters in a Tough Economy
- Tangible Property Benefits We Will Deliver in the Next Five Years
- Steps Property Owners Must Take to Extend PBID Benefits
- What Will the PDA Accomplish with the Renewal?
- Property-based Business Improvement District FAQs
- The PDA Makes a Difference: Here Is What Others Have to Say
Who We Are: The Playhouse District Association (PDA) is a Property-based Business Improvement District (PBID) operating for 10 years in the heart of Downtown Pasadena. The PDA is a non-profit organization funded by business improvement district assessments to promote the economic vitality of the Playhouse District as Pasadena’s center for culture, commerce and community.
What We Do: As a local business district we are able to collectively bring resources to the District. We help leverage private investment and bring further public investment to the Playhouse District area, leading to improved property values and a more vibrant economic environment. In the last two years over $3.5 million have been invested in street improvements. In addition, we keep the District clean and safe, produce events, and build the economic strength of the District.
Why Reinvesting in the PBID Matters in a Tough Economy
The PBID funds essential programs and services above and beyond baseline services provided by the City to create a clean, safe, vibrant, and clearly branded pedestrian environment that is essential to attract and maintain businesses, residents and customers. The marketing edge and physical improvements provided by the PBID are especially needed to make our District stand out and thrive in a competitive economy.
Tangible Property Benefits We Will Deliver in the Next Five Years
Playhouse District benefits include a “Clean and Safe” program, business promotions and marketing, business resource center, parking solutions, special events, upgraded streetscape amenities throughout the District, and advocacy for District priorities. In addition to these augmented services, we will leverage a parking grant from the City totaling $825,000 over five years to secure 600 additional public parking spaces and two public parks. We will increase sidewalk pressure washing, organize additional promotional events, and expand the PDA’s marketing campaign showcasing our unique niche as Pasadena’s hub for arts and culture.
Steps Property Owners Must Take to Extend PBID Benefits
Property owners in the District must complete two steps: First, property owners must petition the City to authorize a ballot for the continuation of the PBID for another five years. Second, property owners must cast ballots to approve the District renewal.
What Will the PDA Accomplish with the Renewal?
Renewal of the PDA Property-based Business Improvement District (PBID) will enable us to build on the success of events, programs and services established within the last ten years. Four new programs are budgeted to fully realize the District’s potential:
Park Now Initiative: The PDA is working with community stakeholders and the City of Pasadena to secure two community parks built over subterranean public parking spaces on two municipal parking lots. The development of additional parking will remedy the District’s parking shortage and lack of public open space. Park Now will deliver two parks with over 300 parking spaces each to serve as village greens, event venues, and oases for relaxation and exercise. The parks and public garages we are working on will be the biggest public investment in this area since the Playhouse itself was built in 1925.
Many buildings in the Playhouse District, especially older structures, lack sufficient parking on site. Six hundred new parking spaces will meet the need for centrally located customer and employee parking and will also be a resource for property owners seeking to lease space and secure permits for higher-intensity land uses that require more parking. A sufficient parking supply supports high-quality tenants and higher rents, and also supports a lively pedestrian district by enabling visitors to “Park Once” for all their District destinations. PBID renewal will enable the PDA to act to assure that the City builds parks and parking in the District.
Increased Sidewalk Pressure Washing: Clean streets are a cornerstone program that boosts business and pedestrian traffic in the District. The steady increase in District foot traffic creates a need for higher maintenance. PBID renewal will fund a 25% increase in Zone A pressure washing and a 50% increase in Zone B.
Marketing the District as Pasadena’s Hub of Arts & Culture: The Playhouse District occupies a special niche with four live performance venues, two major museums, seven bookstores, educational institutions, cinemas, galleries, night clubs, restaurants and an abundance of design, décor, and arts-related businesses. PBID renewal will implement the PDA’s action plan to expand recognition of the District as an arts and culture hub and recruit more businesses to complement this niche.
Expanded PDA Events: In order to bring local residents, regional visitors, office workers and families to the Playhouse District, the PDA will increase cultural and promotional events. PBID Renewal will boost foot traffic and increase business patronage through additional innovative arts and culture events that bring customers to the District on a regular basis.
Property-based Business Improvement District (PBID) FAQs
1. How many PDA services and programs will continue if the PBID is not renewed?
The PBID is the main funding mechanism for PDA programs and services. If the PBID is not funded then most programs will no longer exist. For example, no PDA sidewalk cleaning, security, district advocacy, or promotional events would occur for the benefit of the District’s businesses, residents and properties.
2. What is a PBID?
A PBID is an economic revitalization funding tool which allows business district property owners to pool their financial resources by assessing themselves to pay for certain district-wide activities and improvements. PBID’s have existed in this country for three decades and are the most effective and fair method to fund business improvement programs. The Playhouse District PBID is one of three within greater Downtown Pasadena.
3. Is a PBID assessment a new tax?
No. As a Playhouse District property owner you are simply agreeing to pool your assessment with the other 500 District property owners solely for the benefit of the District. The assessment is collected as a small line item on your property tax bill. In contrast, taxes go into government agency general funds to be used throughout their jurisdictions as needed.
4. Is a PBID just another government program?
No. This is your money going to work 100% in the Playhouse District, managed by District leadership. The non-profit PDA Board of Directors composed of District residents, business people, and property owners allocates PBID funds for the programs and activities authorized by the approved Management Plan. The City’s role is to initially approve establishment of the PBID, and to annually approve the PBID budget and collect, or cause to be collected, the funds from the County Tax Collector.
The PDA Makes a Difference: Here Is What Others Have to Say
“The Playhouse District Association has a history of being a strong advocate for the District, and has lobbied for parking, parks, streetscapes, and walkability. In addition the PDA has been a leader of Downtown Pasadena collaborative efforts.”
– Mayor Bill Bogaard
“Working together as a locally driven improvement district, the Playhouse District Association has been able to bring resources to our neighborhood that no individual property owner, tenant or business could. Without PDA, we simply would not have the focus of City Hall and resources would go to other areas of the City. We can all be exceptionally proud of the accomplishments of PDA!”
– Joel Sheldon, President, Vroman’s Bookstore
“Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts was presented with many options for the consolidation of our campus locations, including leaving Pasadena. Following conversations with the Playhouse District Association and local business owners, a decision was made to continue our expansion in Pasadena. From our initial meetings with the City through the challenges associated with business development, the PDA served as a valuable resource and advocate. The PDA continues to provide valuable resources to our business and the community through the promotion of district offerings and building awareness for all of the attributes the district possesses.”
– Tony Bondi, President, Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts.
A copy of the full Management Plan is on file at the Playhouse District Association. To receive a copy or additional information, contact Erlinda Romo at email@example.com.