How can business district associations drive economic growth for small businesses in their region?
Jewelers’ Row is the Oldest Diamond District in America dating back to 1851. The Jewelers’ Row Association has existed for multiple generations for those within the industry, however, the next generation of business owners are taking this historic district to the next level.
Thinking bigger picture than every business out for themselves, starting about two years ago, I lead an effort to unite the next generation of business owners on Jewelers’ Row. The vision was to expand the Association by opening up to businesses of all types within our district and holding events to physically draw more traffic to our streets. After rallying up about a dozen other local business owners willing to help redefine and our rebrand our Association, we changed our name to the Jewelers’ Row District and something magical began to happen. We found that many other businesses within a block or two from us felt they lacked a neighborhood to identify with. Many were searching for a way to take part in more local events and get additional exposure, but didn’t know where to turn.
The new Jewelers’ Row District was just an idea, then became a movement. We now span from Walnut to Market Street and 7th to 9th Street, encompassing not only the finest jewelry stores and retail shops, but delicious restaurants, galleries and businesses of all kinds. With our historic brick-paved Sansom Street at our core, over the past year we have grown from twenty-some members to over nearly 70 strong!
We hired SPW Productions to help us with event planning and last December we closed off Sansom St. and had our first Holiday Give-a-way event. Over the summer we held our first Movie Night on the Row, showing The Silver Linings Playbook (where the final kiss scene actually happened on Jewelers’ Row)! Then, we successfully held our first Fall Block Party in September with great food & drinks from local restaurants & bars, music, games, a wedding section and of course amazing jewelry stores showing off their finest collections. Our social media is active, growing and promotes all of our members, as well as our new website which recently launched: jrow.org
Businesses are benefitting from our new and improved District. The events have helped to physically bring more people to our streets, but the overall awareness is really starting to have an impact as well. In addition, the businesses within our own community are working with each as we get to know our neighbors better. Many businesses have also begun offering special discounts and promotions to our own association members to increase traffic and revenue.
This is just a taste of what is happening in our historic District. The energy is growing and together we are driving economic growth. We are once again becoming a destination for all of Philadelphia.
Rich Goldberg is one of hundreds of small business owners that make up 60% of our membership. The Chamber is committed to providing small businesses with the tools to succeed in our region’s evolving market. Learn more at ChamberPHL.com/SmallBiz.
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Small Business Month
We’re proud to partner with Comcast Business to present Small Business Month 2019. This month-long campaign highlights our region’s commitment to small and growth-oriented businesses featuring a variety of educational programs and networking opportunities for our region’s small businesses and entrepreneurs.