Can downtown Hagerstown be a retail center and an exciting place to live? Marketing strategist Brian Flook thinks so, but it will take more than advertising and brainstorming to make it happen.
What will it take? What the tourism promoters call a "destination attraction" to bring the foot traffic that the downtown area needs.
Some of that traffic will come as a result of the opening of the University System of Maryland's downtown campus. Other traffic will come as downtown housing is redeveloped into private residences by those who are being priced out of other urban areas such as Frederick.
Other possibilities include:
· Developer Manny Shaool's one-time proposal to turn his building at 72-74 W. Washington St. in a home-design center. Shaool had pledged to finance all but $400,000 of the $2 million project, which would draw owners of new and existing homes for a variety of services and products.