What’s An IBIZ ?
IBIZ stands for “Independent Business Investment Zone”
IBIZ Districts are concentrated clusters of locally-owned businesses which share a common identity, common interests and needs, and a common customer base. They are preferably walkable, with a variety of shopping/dining/entertainment/service options available, making them attractive destinations for locals and visitors alike.
IBIZ Districts are self-selected, in that merchants in an area must request designation as an IBIZ District, determine that the selected area meets the program criteria, and obtain significant buy-in from the merchants in the proposed district.
In general, IBIZ Districts must meet the following criteria:
- One mile or less in a contiguous, walkable cluster
- Include from 20-100 businesses, of which 75% or more are locally-owned.
- Have a common identity or character that unites them as a district
- Have significant buy-in and interest from merchants in the area
- Be likely to benefit from the services provided by the program
These criteria may be modified on a case-by-case basis, and new districts are formed only as capacity is available to adequately provide services.
The IBIZ program is based on a model of commercial corridor revitalization efforts throughout the country, including elements of the Main Street model. It is intended to be a long-term partnership with area merchants, and to grow with the districts as they themselves grow and change. The IBIZ program provides professional leadership to assist with local capacity building, coordination of efforts, branding and marketing, communication between the merchants, and assistance with problem-solving. The IBIZ District program relies heavily on volunteer support and participation from the District Merchants.