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PA Downtown Center to Host Premier Revitalization Conference in Reading

by Pennsylvania Downtown Center

Aug 30, 2021

Pennsylvania Downtown Center’s (PDC) 2021 Annual Statewide Conference will be held on September 12th through September 15th in downtown Reading, PA.

“DESIGN: Beyond the Structures”— Join the conversation on designing for the future: integrating new approaches, ideals, values and cultures all while preserving the historic characteristics that make our communities unique. Conference-goers will explore the many facets of DESIGN: How we use buildings, streets, sidewalks – all spaces of our cities, towns and neighborhoods. These places that help to create social interactions for greater interconnected communities. With inspirational keynotes, Dr. Mariela Alfonzo, founder and CEO of State of Place and Mary Means, Founder of Main Street, immersive mobile workshops in the City of Reading and the boroughs of Boyertown, Hamburg and West Reading along with sessions at the DoubleTree by Hilton Reading led by experts in the field.

We are all dealing with uncertainty, attempting to make the best decisions given the current conditions, all while working to manage a variety of comfort levels, expectations, and possible future restrictions. PDC is committed to offering the best in person experience for PDC conference attendees, and the safest conditions that we can offer to our Main Street and Elm Street managers, experts in community revitalization, and representatives of local government who are our avid participants of the annual event.

“PDC is excited to bring PA’s premier revitalization conference to Reading and Berks Counties’ surrounding Main Street and Elm Street communities. This region is an ideal place to celebrate the past and the present; highlighting local cultural heritage as we add our own 21st Century twists to the events and celebrations that many of our Main Street and Elm Street communities revel in today”, said Julie Fitzpatrick, executive director, Pennsylvania Downtown Center. “Our host sites provide excellent examples of how people live and move, and how those activities are changing. We need to consider designing for the future – from creating Smart Cities, and reinventing our parking “challenges”, to identifying ways to integrate new approaches, new ideas, new values, and new cultures into our communities. We look forward to seeing you in Reading, in September.”

“We are thrilled to welcome all participants of the Pennsylvania Downtown Center’s conference to Reading,” said Mayor Eddie Morán. “It is most appropriate for Reading to host this conference as we earnestly engage in a transformational plan for our own Downtown corridor. Participants will leave our Downtown and our City inspired by its history, architecture, vibrancy, and potential.

“The County of Berks is thrilled to host this year’s downtown conference and foster the ongoing discussion about how to breathe new life into our communities while maintaining our distinct local flavors,” said David N. Hunter Sr., Executive Director of the Berks County Planning Commission. “We believe it is important to be intentional about every choice we make while planning for the future of our County to effectively meet residents’ needs in a creative and meaningful way. We’re excited to learn and grow together at this year’s conference.”

Conference registration remains open and we are pleased to let you know that guest rooms are still available at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Reading through August 30th, at the room block rate of $139/night.

The community is invited to attend a free “Community Revitalization 101” on Sunday, September 12thregistration is required.

PDC is also offering live virtual sessions that have been approved for continuing education credits for both certified planners seeking AICP Certification Maintenance (CM) and licensed architects seeking AIA Learning Units (LU), for details please see the Schedule at a Glance. Please note that these sessions will NOT be recorded for later, on-demand viewing. For anyone who has not yet registered, but is interested in attending these continuing education sessions, please register through this link.

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