In first year, initiative has impact downtown

One of downtown Augusta's organizations turns a year old today.

The main thrust of Augusta's downtown business improvement district, the Clean Augusta Downtown Initiative -- CADI for short -- logged the removal of 30 tons of litter and hundreds of pedestrian-assistance incidents in its first year.

"Our downtown is so much friendlier with these guys," said Margaret Woodard, the executive director of the Downtown Development Authority of Augusta, which oversees the initiative.

CADI is funded through a business improvement district that incorporates 30 downtown blocks. The businesses in the district pay an additional assessment, which totals $400,000 annually, for cleaning and safety services not provided by the city.

"People have come up to me who didn't sign the (business improvement district) petition because they didn't get it and now they get it. People have also said they'd like to be in it. Those are your two litmus tests," Ms. Woodard said.

CADI employees are power washers, tour guides, traffic-control assistants, graffiti removers and parking lot security guards.

Ms. Woodard said ideas are percolating on the possibility of more services in the second year, such as transporting downtown workers to lunch at restaurants.

She's also on the hunt for more revenue, saying there is a possibility that sponsorship spots might be offered on the CADI Segways.

Reach Tim Rausch at (706) 823-3352 or timothy.rausch@augustachronicle.com.

CLEANER, FRIENDLIER DOWNTOWN

The Clean Augusta Downtown Initiative (CADI) has been on the streets for a year. Some statistics on its first year:

61,725

Pounds of litter removed

78

Police-assistance incidents (traffic control)

250

Pedestrian- assistance incidents

148

Panhandler reports

Source: Downtown Development Authority of Augusta

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