In August, 2014 the Bellingham City Council approved the
Downtown Bellingham Plan and related development regulations. Together, these planning tools guide private development and public improvements, and help prioritize city investment in the development of Downtown.
- Downtown District Development Regulations
- Design Review
City Center Housing Market Study
City Center, which includes the Downtown, Old Town, and Waterfront Districts, has unique opportunities for residential development. A
2018 rental market study (PDF) provides an analysis of the housing stock, rental prices, and vacancy rates in City Center. The study also shows market changes and trends compared to findings from 2011.
Downtown Retail Strategy
Downtown Retail Strategy was developed to strengthen the retail mix downtown in an effort to improve the overall attraction of living-wage jobs, residential investment, street activity and fiscal health of the district. The strategy considers the specific trade area of downtown and the demo- and psych- graphics of the target market to determine the types of stores likely to be most successful in a focused retail area. The City and
Downtown Bellingham Partnership (DBP) have partnered on this effort, including a Retail Advocate position (within the DBP office) who is working to recruit businesses and pursue the other recommendations outlined in the report.