Forward High Point, Inc. (FHP) was formed six years ago by the City of High Point to spearhead the City Council’s Goals of bringing new investment, businesses, employees, and residents into a quadrant of downtown that had been seeing a decline in business, activity, and value. FHP took the lead in the development of a catalyst project (Multi-Use Stadium - Truist Point Stadium). During these past six years, FHP has operated primarily as a very proactive economic development organization.
The Stadium is in full operation and the initial development goals have been surpassed. This downtown area is seeing the steady influx of new investment, restaurants and offices; with substantial residential and hospitality projects planned. Forward High Point and the City of High Point agreed that it was crucial for the organization take time to assess its goals and objectives, while looking to transform FHP into a more “typical” downtown development organization, with greater focus on urban environmental management, branding, and marketing. To that end, FHP hired Benchmark Planning to guide the development of a strategic planning process for the downtown area, to lead the community’s efforts over the next 5-years and beyond.
The Strategic Plan examines current economic development plans, community desires, physical and social assets, and existing organizational structures to make recommendations for FHP and the City of High Point to best meet the community’s vision for an inclusive, livable, healthy, family-friendly, economically vibrant, and exciting downtown. Recently completed (2023), it will be used as a tool to help make policy decisions and promote downtown investment. FHP believes that downtown is the heart of the community and should be a place that is welcoming to all residents and visitors. The strategic planning process provided an opportunity for the community to get involved and share their thoughts and ideas on the issues that matter most to the future of downtown.