International Downtown Association Honors Downtown Alliance with Annual Pinnacle Award for its Comprehensive Response to Hurricane Sandy
As part of its annual Downtown Achievement Awards, the International Downtown Association (IDA) honored the Alliance for Downtown New York with one of 12 Pinnacle Awards, the IDA’s highest honor. The IDA recognized the Downtown Alliance in the Downtown Leadership and Management category for its comprehensive response to Hurricane Sandy.
“Our response to Hurricane Sandy was a total team effort,” said Acting President William Bernstein. “Liz Berger, our late president, led the Downtown Alliance’s response to Hurricane Sandy and we are proud to accept this award in her honor.”
“The Downtown Alliance received the prestigious Pinnacle award for demonstrating excellence in downtown leadership and management”, said David Downey, IDA President and CEO. “Each year the IDA Awards Jury honors the very best programs and projects in each category to recognize great work and most importantly to set the standard for best practice in our industry. The Downtown Alliance’s response to Hurricane Sandy serves as a strong example for all downtowns to emulate.”
The Downtown Alliance’s response to Hurricane Sandy focused on the many tools at the Alliance’s disposal to counter the set of challenges Sandy placed on Lower Manhattan. Downtown Alliance established several strategies that focused on: preparation, communication, assistance and advocacy. Before and after the storm, members of the public safety and sanitation crews secured and cleared roadways, cleaned debris, and took assessments across the district. Recognizing the need to assist small businesses, the Downtown Alliance established a $1.6 million Back to Business Small Grant Program, granting businesses up to $20,000. With many businesses facing challenges of restoring telecommunication networks, the Downtown Alliance distributed square mobile card devices to retailers that were unable to complete credit card transactions. Encouraging residents, workers, and tourists to shop local and patronized neighborhood shops and restaurants, the Downtown Alliance also rapidly reframed the focus of its holiday marketing campaign.
Out of 250 entries, the Downtown Alliance was one of 12 organizations to receive this year’s Downtown Pinnacle Award. Other winning organizations included the: City of Lancaster, City of New Westminster, City of Victoria, Downtown Dayton Partnership, Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc., Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc., Downtown SLC Alliance, El Paso Downtown Management District, Indianapolis Downtown Inc., Madison Avenue Business Improvement District, and Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership. Read further information on this year’s award winners here.