Watchout - the Lokerville Lookouts are keeping tabs on each other, their neighborhood spaces, and the downtown business district. In preparation for the upcoming Lokerville Lookouts Block Party at Butterworth Park on September 8, Downtown Framingham, Inc. (DFI) engaged the neighborhood to identify block leaders and learn more about their needs, lifestyle, and business desires. Through this exercise, DFI gleaned that creating a robust urban business development strategy requires a well-knit, supportive atmosphere for walking, cycling, and community gatherings.
Lokerville, comprised of the neighborhood blocks surrounding Butterworth Park, is named after the Loker family who owned much of the land in the late 1800s when it became a part of Framingham. The overall objective of the engagement strategy is to build trust and familiarity among the residents in this historic area of south Framingham in order to drive increased community awareness and downtown business development.
Over the past two months, a sample of nearly 800 residents received surveys seeking answers about life in Lokerville. The survey asked about safety, neighborly interactions, patronage of downtown businesses, and walkability of this neighborhood, among other questions. 78 surveys were completed, and more than 80 percent of the respondents indicated that they both enjoy and feel safe in this community. The Lokerville Lookouts named Jack’s Abby and Pho Dakao the top two downtown businesses, respectively, with Sofa Cafe earning third place. Overall, the respondents were passionate about the ideal downtown dining experience.
Through “Social Share Cards”, respondents had the option to publicly share a bit about their hobbies, neighborhood aspirations, and favorite downtown businesses. 14 survey respondents stepped up to serve as block leaders, charged with supporting preparations and community outreach for the September 8 block party, which features a performance by Framingham’s own Big Bad Wolf band.
Downtown Framingham, Inc. will next inform downtown businesses about the results of the Lokerville survey while assessing the neighborhood’s atmosphere to most effectively support walking and cycling, which is essential for stimulating a greater sense of community while driving increased business patronage. Updates on activities at the Lokerville Lookout Block Party will soon be unveiled.
To learn more about this project, visit: https://downtownframinghaminc.org/lokerville