Downtown Design Plan

The Town of Brattleboro is working on a Downtown Design Plan, which will describe and illustrate the community’s vision for future downtown improvements and projects. This planning process will address:

  • Improving routes, access and circulation for pedestrians and bicyclists;
  • Incorporating green stormwater practices into streets and public spaces;
  • Identifying opportunities for creative placemaking that use arts and cultural activities to enliven and revitalize public spaces; and
  • Enhancing long-term economic stability for downtown businesses.

The Brattleboro Downtown Design Plan project will implement participatory planning techniques – including a pop-up demonstration (the Better Block Challenge in September) and a design charrette (Places for People in October) – to envision and build consensus around future changes to the public spaces and infrastructure in downtown Brattleboro (see study area map).

We are conducting a short survey as part of the Downtown Design Plan. Please take a few minutes to share your impressions of downtown, how you use the public spaces (streets, sidewalks, parks, parking lots) downtown and what improvements you would like to see to those spaces.

Better Block Challenge

The Brattleboro Planning Commission has selected three Better Block projects (from 12 great proposals) to be designed and built by community members. The projects will be installed September 20-22 in downtown.

A Better Block is a temporary project that adds life to underutilized or unwelcoming downtown spaces. The Better Block approach has been used in more than 100 communities around the country to create walkable/bikeable downtowns, attract customers to downtown businesses and improve quality of life for downtown residents. Learn more at

Main Street

The Brooks Memorial Library will partner with the Downtown Brattleboro Alliance to create a pop-up “storywalk” on each side of Main Street from the Whetstone Pathway to the library enticing people to walk the length of Main Street and read the story that unfolds station by station along the way. This will be combined with a colorful and participatory art installation at the library.

Bike Lanes
Flat Street

The Brattleboro Coalition for Active Transportation is proposing to create pop-up bicycle lanes on Flat Street between Elm Street and Main Street and a “critical mass” group bike ride during the Better Block event.

Alley Activation
Main Street

The business owners at 167-181 Main Street (Brattleboro Bicycle Shop, Penelope Wurr, Mitchell Giddings Fine Arts, Insight Photography, A Candle in the Night and Austin Designs) will collaborate to transform the alley between their buildings into a safe and inviting space with student art, greenery and lighting.