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Downtown Tucson Partnership Honored with Award of Resilience

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DOWNTOWN TUCSON, AZ, May 27, 2021 – The Downtown Tucson Partnership (DTP) has been awarded the 2021 Common Ground Award of Resilience by the Metropolitan Pima Alliance (MPA) for their rapid response and outstanding work during the past pandemic year. The MPA’s annual Common Ground Awards honor community leaders and programs that have made significant contributions and found solutions to complex challenges in creative ways by promoting collaborative partnerships that find common ground.

The new Award of Resilience was created this year by the MPA to honor exceptional COVID-related projects in the community. Several innovative programs were created behind the scenes to support struggling downtown businesses like the DTP Gift Card Incentive Program, Downtown Grant Programs, the Downtown COVID-19 Testing Center, the Downtown Reopening Marketing Campaign and more. The DTP has also worked diligently as essential workers throughout the pandemic, keeping the downtown clean and safe through heightened sanitation and security service.

"I'm proud of our organization for quickly responding to the needs of the downtown business community during these trying times. Each day we woke up and asked ourselves, 'What do these businesses need to survive and what can we do to help?'" stated Kathleen Eriksen, President & CEO of the DTP. "We are honored to receive recognition through the MPA. We would not have been able to provide this support without help from our many sponsors and downtown supporters. Pima County Federal Cares dollars were awarded to us through a partnership agreement and helped us to respond creatively and rapidly. Tucson is a resilient community and we’re excited to be a part of its bright future.”

The DTP responded to these challenging times with creative initiatives, financial support, and vital real-time communications. The DTP Gift Card Incentive program infused $308,000 directly into downtown businesses in two short months. A progressive partnership agreement with Pima County resulted in innovative re-granting programs like the Outdoor Café and Downtown Rebound grants with a total of 72 grants and approximately $200,000 awarded to downtown businesses. Additional funds were made available to acquire and install 40 public hand sanitation stations, 12 touchless solar-powered trash compactors, eight water filling stations and 158 street trees tight-wrapped in white lights. DTP helped to select the site and provide marketing for a free COVID-19 testing site located downtown. DTP also welcomed the community back downtown while sharing important health and safety information through the installation of 200 banners, 100s of business posters and signage, window vinyl and sidewalk clings. The end of 2020 saw the launch of a new state-of-the-art website for downtown, which features improved functionality, a modern design and visually stunning content. A brand new user-friendly Downtown Tucson Gift Card was also released and is honored at over 50 downtown businesses.