Statistical & Study Views: ArtsDistricts, Cultural Districts, Design Districts

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Valuable Analytical Study & Training Tools



  • The number of top 200  ranked U.S. cities and towns with arts, design or cultural districts that also report having the highest attainment of combined college and graduate degrees
  • (Source: Staff ABSTRACT of the 2007 report & 2010 updates - 7 Arts Foundation; All rights reserved ]
  • Members - Now, there's a statistical ABSTRACT featured on nearly every page.... over 60 as of today, and counting; also see our ABSTRACTS: RATIOS.


  • The number of U.S. cities and towns with established or emerging arts, design or cultural districts which ranked as the largest MSAs in the country
  • (Source: Staff ABSTRACT of the 2007 report & 2010 updates - 7 Arts Foundation; All rights reserved ]
  • The number of U.S. cities and towns with arts, design or cultural districts which are hosts to both the most highly rated museums in the country and the most highly rated children's mueums in the nation
  • (Source: Staff ABSTRACT of the 2007 report & 2010 updates - 7 Arts Foundation; All rights reserved ]
  • The number of U.S. cities and towns with established or emerging arts, design or cultural districts which report the highest high school graduation rates in the country
  • (Source: Staff ABSTRACT of the 2007 report - 7 Arts Foundation; All rights reserved ]


  • The number of ranked U.S. cities and towns with established arts, design or cultural districts which are ranked as the top 100 arts and culture MSAs and are ranked among the largest MSAs in the nation
  • (Source: Staff ABSTRACT of the 2007 report - 7 Arts Foundation; All rights reserved ]

Meaningful numbers measure some of the ways arts, design and culture-based destination districts achieve their Mission. Others, like abstract: ratios can help describe determinations as to whether claims have been exceeded, met or missed.

Many reasonable people expect to help current and future developers and responsive politicians, community leaders and a host of artists and arts administrators by casting light on the overall health of their brand of destination district programs and projects. District-wide strengths and weaknesses made evident can spur development, encourage memberships and provide a helpful way for economic development professionals to invite prospective industrial and professional firms to locate and stay in the community. Such district-wide improvements can be explained by arts participants who may be more interested in environmental, aesthetic and efficiency measures than in means to utility and convenience.

The father of modern psychology, William James, tells us both groups can be said to simaltaneously value and appreciate convenience and design. To facilitiate the needs of this blending of arts/design/cultural and business/social/political views, the above-referenced analytical tools have been developed. Like any kind of analysis, they break down wholes to explain phenomena in such a way as to be instructive about the many purposes and the correlative factors made plain by counting instances where destination districts flourish side by side with growing and progressive communities.

Perhaps those who would rather discount such numerical relationships out of hand have either not fully studied the correlations to know the truths found in them or they have forgotten that arts, design and culture-based destination districts often serve as magnets to many types of talented, skilled and intellectually curious people. It is the clear exception to a rule of thumb when a lone design genius or artist of solitary brilliance excels in isolation; for in nearly all instances, recognized by many critics and cultural historians alike, it is the intense, localized concentration of creative lights that toil and commiserate together where one or a few expressions rise above an outstanding din of remarkable collisions and collaborations. This is the stuff alive in the arts, design and culture-based destination districts in which we study, observe and train.

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WHAT WE STUDY: Arts & Cultural Corridor Advisory Analysis Using Both Alliance Capitalism & Market Capitalism Models

At the 7 Arts Foundation...

  • We study the impact arts, design and culture-based destination districts may have on both commercial development and the arts and design communities they may, or may not, be serving;
  • We study arts and design cluster participants as they exhibit collaboration alongside competition behaviors.
  • We study the possible correlations between arts, design and culture-based districts and growth, change and other impact patterns that may be linked to acclaimed arts, design and cultural pursuits in North American towns and cities
  • We study the qualitative value of arts, design and culture-based districts to artists, residents and visitors; and,
  • We study the quantitative value in clustering acclaimable arts-related activities and artist's living and working spaces amidst locally owned and operated businesses, public places and pedestrian-oriented, tourist-friendly destinations, stated as Economic Multipliers.

What follows are the most commonly relied upon Economic Multiplier Programs Members and Guests have been using to consistently indicate changes in value in many forms within arts, design and culture-based destination districts: A statistically significant number of arts, design and culture-based destination districts have been shown to sustainably change the following:

  1. Average increase in the value of Corridor Retail Properties
  2. Average increase in the value of Corridor Commercial, Light Manufacture Properties
  3. Average increase in the value of Corridor Investment-quality Apartment, Condominium and Cooperative Properties
  4. Average increase in the value in Family Dwelling Properties
  5. Average increase in Corridor and Tangent Neighborhood Wages and Benefits
  6. Average increase in Corridor Property and Franchise Taxes Collected
  7. Average increase in Corridor-situated Project Fees to Local, County and State Coffers
  8. Average increase in Corridor-based Retail and E-commerce Sales
  9. Average increase in Unrestricted Donations to Corridor-based Nonprofits
  10. Average increase in the value of Corridor-situated Nonprofit Properties
  11. Average increase in the value of New Rentals, Leases
  12. Average increase in Parking Revenues and Taxes
  13. Average increase in the volume of Nonprofit Restricted Grants, Donations
  14. Patterns of increased frequency and dollar-volume for Corridor and Tangent Neighborhood New Construction
  15. Average increase in Corridor-specific New Business Investment
  16. Average increase in the flow of Corridor-qualified New Business Loans
  17. Patterns of increased value of Corridor-specific In-Kind Contributions
  18. Patterns of increased returns on both Historic Investment Tax Credit and Conventional Investment Properties
  19. Patterns in the increased flow of Local Tax Credits, Tax Deferrals, Abatements and speed the march toward TIFF districting
  20. Average increase in the volume of Corridor-based Wholesale Revenues
  21. Average increase in Corridor-based billings for New Utilites' Use and many Insurance Underwriting Programs
  22. Patterns of increased flow of New Endowment Giving
  23. Average increase in the value of Local-County-State Real Property
  24. Average increase in the billing volume for Local Legal-Accounting-Consulting-Security Firms
  25. Patterns of increases in Corridor-specific Nonprofit Dues-Paying Memberships
  26. Patterns of increases in the Goodwill Advantage Gained to Attract the Next Generation of Development and Re-development Participants


  • RETAIL LOCATIONS: over 100 compatible participants in arts-inclusive places
  • OFFICE LOCATIONS: over 32 compatible participants...
  • ARTS LOCATIONS: over 40 compatible participants...
  • PUBLIC EXPRESSIONS: over 80 elements that can contribute to attracting retail, office, arts, residential, and travel-related image and enterprise participants...
  • RESIDENTIAL: multiple single- and mixed-use living units in a wide variety of configurations...
  • TRAVEL: over a dozen compatible participants...

excerpt, from District Characteristics, a report from the 7 Arts Foundation's, FIRST & BEST ANNUAL - 2005, published in response to the many clients which expressed a need to learn which sectors of the economy were expected to be included in both development and re-development projections and impact statements.


An annually updated study guide with categories of constituency and advocacy issues which have long helped enable visionary N. A. urban arts/design-inclusive developments

  • ARTISTS: Acclaimed artists attracted to the community; Arts groups agreeing to be associated or affiliated with one another in broadly executed publicity, promotional and public relations efforts; and, Arts programmers of critically acclaimable quality who can worked into scheduled presentations at affordable rates within the heart of the district's season
  • BUSINESSES: An anchor hotel wants to develop a site on a space tangent to the propsed district overlay; Major office complex owners want to develop a site on a mixed-use space within the district overlay, preferrably proximate to a destination hotel site; Employers can be convinced to make district alliances or partnerships with resident arts groups and studios
  • DEVELOPERS: Underdeveloped properties can be purchased, or development rights can be obtained within the proposed district overlay; An axis can be invented or a pedestrian-friendly mall schematic can be devised to suit both commercial and arts/design needs; Clusters or a superblock of similar enterprises and arts expressions can be grouped together as audience and consumer destinations; Principal participants can be convinced to agree to invent distinctive and acclaimable buildings, facades and facilities; Conncected and some covered walkways can be constructed for pedestrian comfort and as canvasses for artists/designers; Housing developers can be attracted to invent high and mid-density projects within or near the areas which provide a number of live-work studio arts/design spaces
  • GOVERNMENT: Public transit is available to the district overlay gateways or can be scheduled for inclusion into district destination matrices within a suitable and reliable timeframe; A parking garage or other facility is available or can be built within a workable timeframe; Public agencies are willing to help partner with the district alliance to maintain and repair district features and amenities; Public agencies are willing to help guarantee loans or provide TIFF assistance to attract the right mix of developers; Public agencies are willing and able to help landscape the district's open spaces and public spaces; Public agencies are wiling and able to help promote and publicize the district overlay re-development programs and operations in ways which appropriately link the efforts and aims of participants and target constituent groups; Public agencies are willing to arrange adequate policing of the district and its collar blocks; Public agencies coordinate zoning and code enforcement efforts to help eliminate undue delays, and to insure that infrastructure improvements complement re-development timelines within agreeable timeframes; The taxpayer base is mobilized to support a limited bond issue to help underwrite initial site development efforts and long-term infrastructure improvements; Governemt agencies can be convinced to work with resident arts groups and studios as valued downtown assets
  • NEIGHBORS: A definable district of arts, design and  aesthetic advocacy and training sites in one sector; No other comparable destinations for workers, visitors and participatns; The resident population can be trained to think highly of estimable touring, shopping, entertainment and arts/design events and occasions; The resident regional population canbe enticed to live within the district or in its collar blocks; Building owners and operators can be convinced to make district alliances and partnerships (where appropriate) with resident arts groups and studios
  • PRIVATE-PUBLIC ALLIANCES & PARTNERSHIPS: An excellent team of administrators, managers and docents can be recruited to help govern. plan, develop, manage and audit the overlay district; A lay group of Advisors to the district can be recruited and trained to help maintain a balanced and healthy public level of participation
  • PUBLIC MONOPOLIES: Utilities can be upgraded and installed within a mutually agreeable timeframe and at a reasonable shared or reduced cost to the re-development participatns and their allies
  • TOURISTS/MEETING PARTICIPANTS: Work with long-range planners insures that no other comparable destination sites for visitors and meeting participants exist within a two-county area
  • VISITOR/CONVENTION BUREAUS: Officials provide hard numbers with respect to demographics and psychographics and detailed studies that show the path all established cultural, arts and design sites within the county are taking and an impact study that projects how the district activities, programs and events are likely to complement and compete with sites outside the overlay district
  • CITY BEAUTIFUL COMMISSION: Officials and volunteer board members establish an organization empowered to set design guidelines and empowered to put official building and revitalization incentives in place; Council empowers a public agency to impose fines and other impositions upon those entities which choose to defy or ignore ordinances and guidelines
  • DESIGN REVIEW BOARD: A formally invented group dedicated to following the long-range planning models, setting forth review criteria and establishing a range of carrots and sticks to improve chances that development and revitalization efforts tangibly and psychically benefit the village, town or city inhabitants and businesses under their stewardship umbrella

OUR ADI STUDIO STUDIES VITAL STATISTICS - What are the notable impacts of districts in our regional centers [MSAs]? What makes for a successful community? Please visit more of this STATISTICS PAGE, with its links to dozens of reports and briefs that show important statistical views to the answers we've culled from our databank service providers. By way of example, the thumbnail brief, below, provides a recent set of our foundation's 2006 study outcomes: Where you find one or more successful arts-design-culture-based district, you are likely to see useful corollaries - for it has been determined that these destination districts contribute, often meaningfully, to the following statement: Arts, design and culture-based destination districts are important to the urban social, economic and political picture because they appear in...

  • 35 of the top 50 (70.0%) top-ranked U.S. MSAs;
  • 48 of the top 50 (96.0%) largest U.S. MSAs;
  • 19 of the top 30 (63.3%) fastest-growing U.S. MSAs;
  • 15 of the top 30 (50.0%) U.S. MSAs with the highest growth rate;
  • 12 of the top 30 (40.0%) U.S. MSAs with the lowest unemployment rate;
  • 12 of the top 30 (40.0%) U.S. MSAs with the highest recent job growth;
  • 20 of the top 30 (66.6%) U.S. MSAs with the best future job outlook;
  • 18 of the top 30 (60.0%) U.S. MSAs with the highest financial progress index;
  • 17 of the top 30 (56.7%) U.S. MSAs with the highest high school graduation rate;
  • 21 of the top 30 (70.0%) U.S. MSAs with the highest attainment of both college & graduate degrees;
  • 15 of the top 30 (50.0%) U.S. MSAs with the greatest decrease in property crime rate;
  • 10 of the top 10 (100.0%) U.S. MSAs rated as America's most literate cities;
  • 26 of the top 30 (86.7%) U.S. MSAs with highly rated childrens museums;
  • 29 of the top 30 (96.7%) U.S. MSAs with highly rated art museums;  
  • 38 of the top 50 (76.0%) of  U.S. MSAs with the highest quality of life rating;
  • 39 of the top 50 (78.0%) MSAs with the best cultural amenities; and,
  • 177 of 331 major MSAs (53.5%) U.S.  emerging & top-rated  MSAs that promote & support destination districts
  • Updates in progress; complete free report available to Members - Fall 2007 & Updated, 2010.

The Top Twenty-eight Destination District Arts Cluster, Superblock and Corridor Varieties:

Arts District   Arts District & Marketplace  Arts & Antiques District   Arts & Cultural District   Arts & Design District   Arts & Entertainment District   Arts & Historical District  Arts & Open Studios District  Arts & Sciences District     Arts Deco District  Arts Education & Recreation District  Arts & Technology District   Arts & Theatre District  Arts & Warehouse District   Arts Gateway District   Arts Overlay District  Arts Superblock  Cultural Arts District  Cultural District   Entertainment District  Historic Arts District   Museum District  Museum & Theatre District   Giftbox Design District TM    Performing Arts District  Photo District   Theatre District  Theatre Arts District


WHO WE SERVE: A Select list of governments, corporations, foundations, institutions, universities, studios... more. Updated Monthly.

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Nonprofits split apart because people bring with them differing expectations, often under-defined, only to have their expectations go unfulfilled. --- Excerpt, MISSION MANIFESTO, co-published with the 7 Arts Foundation, copyright 1995, by Marshall A. Thomas III


Copyright 2008,  7 Arts Foundation. All rights reserved.

7AF:  Downtown District Solutions Arts Marketplace Solutions Antiques Design Downtown Entertainment District Historical Open Studios Sciences Art Deco Education Recreation Technology Theatre Warehouse Arts Gateway Arts Overlay Arts Superblock Cultural Historic Arts Museum Giftbox Design Performing Arts Photo Theater Arts District Downtown Solutions

ECV = [(PV x Pcs - C) Pas] - D


Like you, we always want to know where the best thinking is taking place, literally from all corners of the globe, in both informal and formal settings wherein the best minds are affecting change in the places that tend to change the best minds. So many parts of the world are tackling the important topics that help explain all varieties of planning, developing, managing and auditing arts, design and cultural-based destination districts. And, our staff keeps assembling the latest list of locales from which we receive member and guest interchanges---data and questions, reports and studies. What an honor to be asked to participate in so many great conversations, so much activity, so terrific a set of observations. Over the past 13 weeks--40 countries and over 850 fascinating and otherwise useful inquiries--all at this highly specialized site. See any emerging patterns, here?


Afganistan: Kandahar

Albania: Tirana 

Australia: Ballarat; Brighton; Brisbane; Sydney 

Brazil: Rio De Janeiro

Canada: Barrie; Brampton; Calgary; Canora; Clinton; Guelph; Montreal; Saint Catherines; Toronto; Vancouver; Windsor; Winkler; Winnipeg

China: Nanjing; Jinan

Colombia: Bogata

Denmark: Copenhagen

Estonia: Tallinn

France: Cormeille-en-parisis; Magny-le-hongre; Paris; Serris

Germany: Frankfurt Am Main; Dresden; Munich; Syke

Ghana: Accra

Greece: Athens

Hong Kong: Central District

India:-- Bagalore; Bombay; Delhi; Faridabad; Hyderabad; Ludhiana; Madras; The Risod - Washim Corridor; Secunderabad 

Indonesia: Tangerang 

Ireland: Galway; Naas

Italy: Foggia; Roma

Japan: Osaka; Yokohama

Luxembourg: Schoos 

Malaysia: Johor Bahru; Klang; Koala Lampur; Melaka; Shah Alam; Singapore 

Mexico: Mexico City

Morocco: Casablanca; Marrakesh 

Netherlands: Bunschoten; Den Haag; Maastricht; Zaanstad

New Zealand: Auckland; Christchurch

Nigeria: Lagos

Pakistan: Karachi

Philippines: Manila; Pasig

Portugal: Lisbon

Romania; Iasi

Serbia: Vrbas

Singapore: Singapore

South Africa: Johannesburg

Spain: Barcelona

Sweden: Garsnas

Switzerland: Huttwil; Schoenenwerd

Thailand: Nonthaburi

Togo: Nyamassila

United Arab Emirates: Dubai 

United Kingdom: Birmingham; Bolton; Coventry; Crawley; Durham; Glasgow; Hetto; Hill; Ilford; Leeds; Leigh; London; Manchester; Mansfield; Stoke 

United States:

  • AL: Birmingham; Huntsville; Mobile
  • AZ: Phoenix; Scottsdale; Tucson
  • AR: Fort Smith; Hot Springs; Little Rock; Little Rock Air Force Base; Sheridan; Texarkana
  • CA: Anaheim; Apple Valley; Belvedere Tiburon; Berkeley; Downey; El Cajon; Glendale; Hayward; Irvine; Los Angeles; Modesto; Mountain View; Murrietta; Pacifica; Prather; Riverside; Sacramento; San Bernardino; San Diego; San Francisco; San Jose; Santa Ana; Santa Clara; South Pasadena; Venice; West Hollywood; Yorba Linda 
  • CO: Arvada; Cortez; Denver; Englewood 
  • CT: Hartford; West Hartford; Windsor Locks; Wolcott
  • DC: Washington
  • FL: Boynton Beach; Bradenton; Clearwater; Delray Beach; Fort Myers; Gainesville; Jacksonville; Kissimmee; Miami; Orlando; Palm Beach Gardens; Panama City Beach; Pompano Beach; Tallahassee; Tampa; Vero Beach
  • GA: Atlanta; Winder 
  • HI: Honolulu
  • ID: Boise; Jerome 
  • IL: Bollingbrook; Chicago; Downers Grove; Galesburg; Lake Forest; Lombard; Monmouth; Oquawka; Pekin; Peoria; Saint Charles; Schaumberg; Trilla; Westchester
  • IN: Bloomington; Terre Haute; Williams
  • IA: Cedar Rapids; Des Moines
  • KS: Hope; Overland Park; Witchita 
  • KY: Ft. Mitchell; Frankfort; Lexington
  • LA: Baton Rouge; New Orleans 
  • ME: Portland; Westbrook  
  • MD: Baltimore; Bel Air; Bethesda; Ellicot City; Highland; Laurel; Pikesville; Randallstown; Rockville; Silver Spring; Waldorf
  • MA: Amherst; Boston; Cambridge; Hudson; Sudbury; Worcester
  • MI: Ann Arbor; Lake Orion; Marysville
  • MN: Loretto; Minneapolis; St. Cloud; St. Michael; St. Paul; Sartell 
  • MS: Clinton;Madison; Jackson; Pearl
  • MO: Halltown; St. Louis
  • MT: Cut Bank; Kevin; Missoula
  • NV: Carson City; Reno 
  • NH: Concord; Nashua; Newton 
  • NJ: Cherry Hill; Forked River; Jersey City; Lyndhurst; Mahwah; Newark; Nutley; Paramus; Paterson; Ridgewood; Somerset; Union City
  • NM: Albuquerque; Los Lunas; Santa Fe
  • NY: Ballston Spa; Bay Shore; Brockport; Bronx; Brooklyn; Buffalo; Clifton Park; Elmont; Hartsdale; Herkimer; Larchmont; New York; Orangeburg; Staten Island; Taberg
  • NC: Apex; Chapel Hill; Charlotte; Clyde; Greensboro; Kernersville; Matthews; Raleigh
  • ND: Bismark
  • OH: Canton; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Dayton; Kent; New Washington; Oberlin; Rocky River; Sunbury
  • OK: Oklahoma City; Tulsa
  • OR: Beaverton; Portland 
  • PA: Bethlehem; Brookhaven; Flourtown; Harleysville; King of Prussia; Newton Springs; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; Plymouth Meeting; Sellersville
  • RI: Kingston; Newport; Providence; Warwick
  • SC: Charleston
  • SD: Pierre
  • TN: Germantown; Nashville 
  • TX: Austin; Cleburne; Dallas; Del Rio; El Paso; Garland; Houston; Humble; Levelland; Lewisville; Midland; Pearland; Richardson; San Antonio; San Marcos; Texarkana
  • UT: Salt Lake City
  • VT: Burlinton
  • VA: Alexandria; Arlington; Christchurch; Harrisonburg; Mc Lean; Norfolk; Richmond; Stafford; Warrenton
  • WA: Bellevue; Kenneville; Olympia; Seattle; Tacoma; Vancouver; Wenatchee
  • WV: Huntington   
  • WI: Clintonville; Madison; Milwaukee; Mount Horeb; Neenah; Racine
  • WY: Cody


Please use the instructional and consultancy, training and advisory references, found below, with our compliments.



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