On Wednesday January 10th the Klamath Falls Downtown Association held a public meeting at Gaucho Collective. During the meeting the KFDA stated the future of the association as well as shared results of a study conducted by Oregon Tech student Jennifer Massey.
Massey surveyed Oregon Tech students regarding how and why they visit downtown Klamath Falls, what the students want when they are downtown and how downtown can improve. Massey's report also provided potential solutions that could be implemented to gain more visitation from Oregon Tech students.
A recording of Massey's presentation, can be heard starting at 12:15 in the audio linked in this story.
Some of the information from Massey's survey found that:
- Most respondents visited Downtown up to "a couple times per week."
- 69% of respondents came downtown for food and dining. Followed by retail and entertainment.
- When asked for their favorite downtown business, respondents said:
- Thai Orchid
- Lighthouse Yogurt Company
- Rodeos Pizza
- A Leap of Taste
- The Pikey
- When asked why they liked a restaurant, respondents said it was because of an affordable menu, quality food, inviting & relaxing atmosphere, and friendly staff
- When asked of any issues downtown - many respondents stated:
- They felt unsafe at night downtown due to the lack of police patrols and poor lighting,
- A dirty overall appearance of downtown attributed to the homeless population,
- Unsafe or "sketchy" atmosphere near El Palacio's,
- Inconsistent business hours or closing too early,
- Parking options in general.
- When asked what could be made better downtown, respondents stated:
- Respondents are looking for a "College Night" or "College Hour." A time set aside specifically for them.
- Student Discounts at all downtown businesses - this also impacts purchasing decisions.
Massey's survey was sent to approximately 3500 Klamath Falls campus students and received 259 valid responses. Massey stated that her results have a 95% rate of confidence. Of the results nearly an even 50% split was received in gender and most were aged 18-24 years old.
Based on the results Massey recommended
- Hosting a college night or college hour on a weekly or monthly basis.
- Adapt a sense of college pride.
- More patrols from law enforcement after dark.
- Extended hours for student shopping and dining.
- Offering a student discount
A request was made by Klamath Falls News to obtain a copy of the full report from Massey. However our request went unanswered as of press time.
During the meeting KFDA Board Executives were announced:
- Nicolas Phair, President - Klamath Insurance Center
- Jason Arstadt, Vice President - Gathering Grounds & Gaucho Collective
- Nell Scott, Secretary - Rodeos Pizza and Saladeria
- Susan Beach, Treasurer - Property Owner
Also mentioned during the meeting is a new partnership program. Gone are the days of membership and dues in favor of partnering with fellow downtown businesses.
More information on the KFDA Board and partnerships can be found at http://www.downtownklamathfalls.org/ on on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DowntownKFalls/