2024 Board Planning Meeting Meeting
Thursday, January 18, 2024
11:00 AM – 1:30 PM City 205 Conference Room Z (In person meeting)
Attendees: Mike Montague, Paul Quattrocchi, Pauline Block, Noelle Hermann, Jim McCalligan, Curt Nichols, Theresa Tommasi, Tom Buckley, Florine Ellingson, Dee Richardson, Danielle Nelson, Raphael Rivera, Paul Quattrocchi, Kris Wilson. Guest: Jill Moyer
Absent: Marianne Neufeld
- CALL TO ORDER AND APPROVAL OF DECEMBER MEETING MINUTES – President, Mike Montague welcomed everyone at 11:05am and reviewed goals of our planning meeting.
Housekeeping items included:
- Motion to approve December minutes was made by Dee Richardson and Pauline Block.
- Conflict of Interest forms signed by all and collected.
- Welcome new board members: Tom Buckley, GM Hotel La Rose and Danielle Nelson, Santa Rosa Plaza
- 2024 PROJECTS/PRIORITIES: review of last year’s priority list & identify the 2024 priority list with the What (goal/project, the Who (board member to lead), the When, timeline to complete where appropriate.
- WHAT/WHO – Board commitments
(Under business marketing) Create a “New Merchant Packet” to identify benefits of merchant participation. Business development should be emphasized with involvement with the hotels.
Other marketing ideas to explore: SMART – Market two different aspects: Larkspur platform could advertise hotels and Petaluma platform could advertise dining. Work with restaurants to promote weekday/night dining to SMART riders. “Create excitement”: promote hotels that are walking distance from SMART. SMART Data can track where passengers board. Plaza can be a gateway and support RRSQ with improved signage including the breezeway. We’ve already seen positive changes during the holiday collaborative marketing campaign.
Increase social media; possible intern or someone in the district.
WHO: Danielle, Mike, Rafael, Tom
Discussion/Brainstorming: What do we need in RRSQ?
Pauline: large scale family friendly events, glow site. Raphael: food trucks during weekdays when business is light. Danielle: miniature trains like in the mall. Mike: rickshaws transporting people. Kris: RRSQ Music Festival – expand to additional areas to dilute crowds and NOT block off streets. Mike: Have a “First Night” in 3 districts – fabulous event. Pauline: do it on a small scale so it’s manageable. We want to continue our merchant mixers which have been so well received and the summer music series that brings a family friendly feel to RRSQ.
WHO: Exec. Director to lead. Dee: Classic Car Show, Dayna & Mike: “Music in the Air”, Noelle & Flo: Merchant Mixers 3X a year.
- BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
Be proactive: Identify best fit businesses for RRSQ. Create merchant packet including “Santa Rosa Now” info. We currently have only 1 vacancy but want to have businesses in the que for future vacancies.
WHO: Pauline: new merchant packets, Pauline, Theresa, and Tom– “Santa Rosa Now”.
- HOTEL MARKETING
Create collaborate marketing to best support our hotels. Plan ongoing meetings with hotels to keep apprised of large groups, conferences, etc. happening so that we can explore opportunities to promote our merchants & restaurants. Include SMART in collaboration planning.
WHO: Theresa and Tom
We’ve seen a lot of negative press regarding encampments and other issues in Santa Rosa so keeping our district clean and safe is crucial. The trash cans throughout the district need to be cleaned and locked. Mike will reach out to Recology to get locks installed. We need to communicate with property owners for timely graffiti removal and how we can assist them.
Who: Tom, Mike. Paul
We continue to keep lines of communication open with City parking staff who have been very supportive. A new parking report may not be out for 6-9 months. Parking is an ongoing issue in RRSQ and Its doubtful things will change unless there is a fee change in parking lots under the freeway that aligns more with City parking garages and the mall parking. (Parking at the mall is free). Garages have their own system VS street parking in RRSQ. Paul has met with City staff to discuss the possibility of painting the columns to look more attractive and feel safer. A future and bigger conversation would include SMART (Park and Ride). Other discussion: the Rose Parade is coming, and visitors should not have to pay for parking. We need to change perception of parking in RRSQ.
Who: Paul and Danielle
There are 16 more planter boxes coming to be placed in the district. We need to decide on a plan for any needed replanting and upkeep.
- TREES & SIDEWALKS
Mike and Jim have walked RRSQ to assess tree removal & replacement as well as identified areas where sidewalks need repair. A tree removal and replacement plan has been created in five phases over multi-years starting with Phase #1 on 4th Street. Some sidewalks need work and will be addressed separately.
Who: Mike & Jim
Curt and Raphael reported that we have received a final letter from the structural engineer for the overhead street lighting project as required by the City. We hope to have the approved design from the City by February 2 and will then request updated bids. The tree lights in Depot Park have been replaced and a new light for the Palm Tree has been ordered by Krist Electric. The lights on the palm tree have never worked properly and we hope to have it resolved with the new fixture.
Who: Curt, Rafael
- UTILITY BOXES & STREET WINDOW DISPLAY
The two existing windowmaps are outdated and will be replaced with new artwork that will include photos used for the Historic Walking Tour. Dee has information for Pauline to get started on a draft design. Artwork for the utility boxes is being explored in the hopes that it would deter ongoing graffiti.
Who: Pauline, Dee, Paul
LONG TERM PROJECTS:
- Depot Park Future Vision: Jim/Curt
- Prince Greenway: Mike
- EIFD opportunities:
- Street Banners: Need updating.
- Wayfinding: Impact of New Signage ordinance to be determined.
- EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SUCCESSION/TRANSITION PLANS
The Executive Committee will be interviewing 2 candidates with the goal of the final candidate to start working with Kris by March 1. Kris’ last day is planned for May 1st.
- LOOKING FORWARD: ONGOING PROJECT MAINTENANCE/UPDATES
PPDI Funds/Depot Park refresh: –
Prince Greenway could be a hybrid project.
ADJOURNMENT: President Mike adjourned the meeting at 1:13 PM.