City of Mount Dora
Commercial Market Assessment
Retail Attraction/Expansion Plan
June 2016-January 2017
Mount Dora Commercial Market Study | Grandview Business District
The City of Mount Dora’s North East Community Redevelopment Area, (NECRA) has a unique business district known as the Grandview Business District. It is a relatively small area of approximately nine acres which was once an active commercial area that has been negatively impacted by development on US 441 over the past twenty years. The objectives of the NECRA are to revitalize the housing and commercial areas of the district. One step towards meeting these objectives was to conduct a comprehensive commercial market study/ economic analysis for the Grandview Street Neighborhood Commercial Area to identify and analyze the NECRA and surrounding area’s existing and potential economic base; market potential for future/new businesses; and recommendations for implementation of the findings of the study. RMA was contracted to conduct the comprehensive commercial market study/economic analysis for the NECRA.
RMA’s tasks to accomplish this included a market analysis, public input, and providing a plan of development for the expansion of business in this district. RMA has developed a specific approach to conducting market studies that has proven to be successful in achieving a balance between the desires of the city and the community. Our approach thrives on meaningful participation and interaction, in public forums, among all stakeholders. The RMA team began by conducting background reviews and gathering public input which included meetings with City staff and officials, meeting with members of the NECRA Advisory Board, an open house with formal and informal public input opportunities, meeting with Grandview Street Business District business and property-owners, and a community survey. A Trade Area Review was also completed as part of the Market Analysis, Recommendations, and Action Plan.
RMA found that the Grandview Business District had several significant assets, including a BBQ restaurant with regional award recognition and a soul food takeout restaurant that serves the community with authentic southern cooking. The District is also easy walking distance from the thriving downtown area. The historical character of Mount Dora and this particular area of town provides additional positive linkage for developing a business district that caters to the community needs.
Outdoor recreation and the associated tourism, such as biking and hiking trails and walking and driving tours, are all important to redevelopment in today’s environment. Creating opportunities for people to get back to nature, and to their roots, is at the cornerstone of vibrant communities and cities. RMA looked at the opportunities available for these attractions and incorporated them into the Action Plan. These “hidden assets” are often the tipping points which new businesses consider in their location analysis.
The City of Mount Dora and the NECRA approved RMA’s Market Assessment and associated recommendations in the Action Plan. As a result of the Market Assessment, new opportunities have been discovered within the context of the community’s needs and in keeping with the unique character of the District. New business and residential interest in this historic area of Mount Dora has been generated and efforts are underway to continue to build on this Assessment going forward.