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New Downtown Fund Sought by Hedgecock

March 12, 1985|LANIE JONES | Times Staff Writer

Saying he wanted to put San Diego's "new downtown before the people of the world," Mayor Roger Hedgecock Monday proposed using $250,000 in city funds and a new marketing consortium to promote the revitalized area.

By a 4-0 vote, the City Council Rules Committee agreed to ask the city manager to find a source of funding for the project and report back to the committee by March 25.

Hedgecock noted that several major downtown projects will be finished during the last quarter of 1985 and in early 1986, including the Horton Plaza Shopping Center, the Meridian high-rise condominiums and the remodeled U.S. Grant Hotel.

"A well-conceived and aggressive marketing program during 1985 and 1986 will showcase a vibrant and exciting downtown," the mayor said.

Last year, two public relations firms, the Stoorza Co. and Nancy MacHutchin and Associates, formed a joint venture to create a marketing program for "Downtown '85" but the program has been slowed by a shortage of funds, the mayor said.

He called for the city to create a nine-member marketing consortium and immediately provide it with $50,000 for promotional work, with Stoorza/MacHutchin or some other firm to do the work.

Hedgecock asked that up to $200,000 more in city funds be earmarked for the project, with the additional money to be matched by private contributions.

The consortium would be a quasi-public group modeled after the city's recently-formed cruise ship consortium. Hedgecock or an appointee would chair the panel, and the eight other directors would be selected.

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