The city of Carpinteria has dissolved the Carpinteria First Friday Committee, ending the city’s monthly promotional event for the downtown T. The committee was created by the Downtown-T Business Advisory Board (DTBAB) which was established in the 1980s to provide local business leaders a collective avenue for promoting commerce in the city’s downtown area. The First Friday program, created in 2008/9, came out of the recession as a way for the city to support businesses by hosting cultural events to draw people downtown.
As the economy has picked up, businesses have participated less and less in First Friday events, according to City Manager Dave Durflinger. “It became difficult to get businesses involved or for business owners to apply to sit on the committee,” said Durflinger, who noted that the DTBAB “takes cues from businesses” on what they need.
Durflinger also noted that City Council’s pro-business policies provide “economic vitality” by “keeping the downtown safe and functioning well,” with clean sidewalks, street sweeping, infrastructure improvements, well-maintained restrooms, parking management to ensure parking turnover and law enforcement. “All of that supports businesses downtown,” said Durflinger, “We’re creating a context for businesses to be successful.”