Next step: Attracting shoppers to Freehold pt1

Jun 3, 2008 | Posted by: Freehold Ed I Tor | Full story: www.app.com

Freehold is your place, local business owners say. But if you're looking for a great place to shop, chances are Freehold won't be at the top of the list.

Officials at the Freehold Center Partnership, an organization devoted to the economic development of the borough's downtown, are betting they can change that perception.

At its annual meeting last month, the partnership decided to allocate $40,000 for business development, according to chief operating manager Jayne Carr. The partnership also plans to hire a part-time specialist in economic development.

These decisions are part of a shift for the partner-ship, which had previously focused on marketing Freehold, Carr said. In the past, people had been afraid to come to Freehold, Carr said. But after years of advertising and the implementation of scores of popular events like Kruise Night, Carr believes officials have successfully convinced nonresidents that Freehold is a place they can visit without fear.

"We've certainly gotten past the "I'm afraid to come here' (factor)," Carr said.

With that goal behind them, partnership officials say they are ready to focus on developing Freehold into a destination town for more than just events and meals.

In recent years, Freehold has done a good job attracting professional offices and restaurants, said Don Smartt, a consultant who works with the partnership and similar organizations to revitalize downtowns.

"That's great. But it (Freehold) has got to be more than that," Smartt said.

A main focus for Freehold should be bringing in specialty stores that would not be found at the mall, Smartt and local business representatives conclude.

"The mall is a great place. But we want people to come downtown and support Freehold," said William Haluska, chairman of the partnership's business development committee.

Those businesses could be anything from a little coffee shop to a clothing boutique, partnership representatives said.

As an example, Smartt cited a crepe shop with a European flavor.

"That's a niche. He (the owner) couldn't ever have gone into the mall," Smartt said. Freehold also needs to find ways to keep visitors in town after eating at the town's restaurants, and should aim to fill vacancies on floors above local businesses, some partnership representatives suggested.
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1 - 11 of 11 Comments Last updated Jun 30, 2008

Since: Feb 08

New Brunswick, NJ

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#1
Jun 3, 2008
 
There have already been a number of opinions written about this article.

To Residence I ask you; what is your vision for Downtown Freehold Borough?

To Visitors I ask: what attracts you to freehold Borough?
bhla bhla

United States

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#2
Jun 5, 2008
 
As an example, Smartt cited a crepe shop with a European flavor? Whats she talking about? the Partnership is all in with the latino festival and she's talking about crepes shops. Did this woman ever take a geography class. What are her credentials, what has she accomplished after 12 years?

The Italian Festival will be at the Racetrack and not Downtown, dontcha think that woulda Attracted shoppers or is downtown become to hibrow?
bhla bhla

United States

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#3
Jun 5, 2008
 
CORRECTION AND CLARIFICATION
1) Smartt is a HE not a She

2) what has he accomplished after 12 years (FOR THE FREEHOLD CENTER PARTNERSHIP)

3) Why does the FCP hire paid Consultants and follow recommendation
Fact Check Lady

Brick, NJ

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#4
Jun 5, 2008
 
bhla bhla wrote:
CORRECTION AND CLARIFICATION
1) Smartt is a HE not a She
2) what has he accomplished after 12 years (FOR THE FREEHOLD CENTER PARTNERSHIP)
3) Why does the FCP hire paid Consultants and follow recommendation
What?
Fisher

New Brunswick, NJ

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#5
Jun 5, 2008
 
Fact Check Lady wrote:
<quoted text>
What?
what, what? expecting better from blah blah
Bob

Newark, OH

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#6
Jun 24, 2008
 

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Freehold Ed I Tor wrote:
There have already been a number of opinions written about this article.
To Residence I ask you; what is your vision for Downtown Freehold Borough?
To Visitors I ask: what attracts you to freehold Borough?
1. More illegals loitering around the streets. More assults, muggings, shootings.

2. Nothing
Bob

Newark, OH

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#7
Jun 24, 2008
 

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assaults
Colonial Citizen

Stirling, NJ

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#8
Jun 24, 2008
 

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If someone attacks you by throwing salt in your eyes and cracks open your skull with an Eveready battery, will they be charged with 'assault & battery with salt & a battery'?
Freeholder

New Brunswick, NJ

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#9
Jun 27, 2008
 

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Colonial Citizen wrote:
If someone attacks you by throwing salt in your eyes and cracks open your skull with an Eveready battery, will they be charged with 'assault & battery with salt & a battery'?
is the LLA involved in your hypothetical ?
Colonial Citizen

Stirling, NJ

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#10
Jun 29, 2008
 

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Freeholder wrote:
<quoted text> is the LLA involved in your hypothetical ?
The Loma Linda Academy? Run by 7th Day Adventists?
A and R Gal

Grand Rapids, MI

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#11
Jun 30, 2008
 
No, PTL-TV

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