March 14 Downtown E-News

The Downtowners’

City Center Newsletter

March 14, 2013

What You Will Find…

□ Exhibit Hall Expansion

□ Downtown Updates

□ Upcoming Events

□ Association News


Bismarck Civic Center Addition Approved

More Space Planned for the Exhibit Hall…

At this Tuesday’s March 12th Bismarck City Commission meeting, plans for the much needed additional Civic Center Exhibition Hall space were moved forward.  Commissioners voted 5-0 in favor of a no tax increase $27 million dollar expansion.  The motion also approved the city to go ahead and study the feasibility of a future north side project.  Many of the commissioners voiced their opinions, not for an either/or scenario, but a look at the best of both.  Two of the critical factors to moving forward with this initial expansion were time and study.  The feasibility of this Downtown expansion has been thoroughly studied and the return is immediate.  The timeline to keep community revenue generating conferences was also closing in.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Downtowners’ Association and community that came out to the public meetings or submitted their input.  There was a strong showing of support for the Downtown Civic Center from many Downtown and community stakeholders.  This is vitally important to all public processes.  We’d also like to thank the commissioners, UBL Design Group and city staff for making themselves available and open to public comment and questions.  Lastly, we’d like to express our thanks to Dr. Knutson and his group for presenting ideas in a respectful way at the public forums.

We’re very proud of our community and appreciate the support and encouragement from the public and stakeholders, and especially our membership.  Our city leaders did what they needed to do in order to keep our community moving in the right direction.

Downtown Master Plan- Input

In the spirit of public input and dialogue, we are inviting members to take part in the Downtown Master Plan.  This plan happens once every 20 or so years and is a document that shapes the future development Downtown.  Please visit the website of the study and see how you can participate and share your thoughts about Downtown’s future.  The plan will be completed in November 2013, between now and they there will be 3 more input meetings and a variety of online input options.  Let’s keep the momentum going for our community’s Downtown by staying active in these very important public projects.  (study area pictured above).


Downtown Updates

–The Downtown Master Plan is underway.  The 1st public input meeting was held March 13 at the Bismarck Civic Center.  If you’d like to sign up for reminders and updates regarding the plan, visit

–The Cowan Bldg development continues on the corner of 4th and Broadway. The sidewalk in front of the building will be closed during construction (south side of the block).  The sidewalk could be open by June.

Quiet Rail Zones are moving forward at 3rd, 5th and 12th Streets in Downtown Bismarck.  At the Feb 26 City Commission meeting, the engineering firm SRF entered into their contract with the city to install the extra safety measures and work with the Federal Railway Administration.

–If you are considering a downtown development or renovation of a Downtown building, the CORE Incentive Programs are once again available through the City of Bismarck.  The CORE Programs currently active are Façade and Signage Grant, Housing Incentive Grant, Technical Assistance Bank, and Sidewalk Subsurface Infill.  The programs are designed to encourage reinvestment, rehabilitation, and new development in the Downtown area.  For more information contact the Downtowners or Jason Tomanek at the City of Bismarck at 701-355-1849.

— The Bismarck Parking Authority is offering free evening parking in the 3rd and Main Ramp from 4pm to 2am daily.  With all the new activity and nightlife in Downtown Bismarck, the ramps allow the public to enjoy the city center and not have to search for street parking.

How the After Hour Complementary Parking Works: Use the entrance to the 3rd & Main Ramp on 3rd Street.  Pull into the ramp and pull a time stamped ticket.  The arm will raise and allow the car through to park.  When exiting the ramp, simply use the hourly lane and deposit your ticket in the slot, the arm will already be raised to allow the cars to exit. There is no leeway on timing.  If you enter at 3:59pm or exit at 2:01am, the customer will be charged the normal hourly rate. 


Upcoming events

What’s Shakin Downtown…


March 14-24

Dakota Stage Presents:

The Spitfire Grill


March 14-16

Class A State Basketball

Bismarck Civic Center


March 15

Heartview Movie Night




March 16

Bis-Man Symphony Presents:

Positively Piano @ The Belle


March 27

Governor’s Awards for the Arts

Radisson Hotel


April 5

Dakota Digital Film Festival

Belle Mehus Auditorium


Dakota Digital Film Festival: Year 2

Member Dakota Media Access is hosting the 2nd Annual Dakota Digital Film Festival April 5 in Downtown Bismarck. The festival will take place at the historic Belle Mehus Auditorium.  Day Session is 8:55am-3pm, which includes production workshops and student films.  Evening Session starts at 7pm including unique short films and interaction with area film makers.  Tickets are $10 each (day or evening session) or a full event pass is $15.  Buy in advance or at the door.  Please support this awesome growing Downtown event!  For more info visit


Downtowners’ Association News

Organization and member news …

Welcome to the newest members of the Downtowners!

Hotwire Cafe


Children’s Advocacy Centers of ND

–You can find all of our member’s information at:

Member BlackRidgeBANK is pleased to announce the promotion of Kayla Kraus to Commercial Loan Officer.   Kayla will perform credit analysis and assisting customers with their commercial loan and deposits.  Congrats Kayla!

Many of our members are participating in St. Baldrick’s Day events to raise money for cancer research and prevention.  Visit www.stbaldrick’ to find events near you!

Be sure to join us Downtown for your St. Patrick’s Day celebrations!  A lot is planned for the holiday weekend including food and drink specials, shopping deals, and live entertainment.

Please send all member business news and events to:

Check the Downtown Business Association’s websites for updated news and events or

Please forward this on to people interested in Downtown news!