About The Downtown Manchester Special Services District 

About the District

The Downtown Manchester Special Services District (DMSSD) was established by a referendum of downtown property owners in 1992 in response to changing economic conditions. Construction of Buckland Hills Mall, a total reconstruction of Main Street and deterioration of the built environment in the downtown were all catalysts for action.

Today, the Downtown District creates a vibrant downtown by supporting our constituents and connecting with the community. The District functions on behalf of the constituents (property owners & business lessees) and is funded by the constituents (special property tax and parking fees). 

  • The DMSSD facilitates efficient monitoring of parking in order to provide accessibility for patrons, residents and employees.
  • The DMSSD supports our constituents through communication, promotion, and by connecting businesses with existing resources.
  • The DMSSD connects to the community by hosting and promoting events  and marketing efforts in coordination with local organizations.
  • The DMSSD maintains a welcoming, clean environment downtown.
  • The DMSSD Board of Commissioners oversees the executive functioning of the District and interprets and enforces policies while representing the issues of the constituents to the Town of Manchester.

District Boundaries

The Downtown District is a vibrant, mixed-use district of retail, office, and residential life comprised of approx. 132 taxable properties. It is situated at the geographical and historic center of Manchester. District boundaries run north to south along Main Street from Center Street to Hartford Road, a distance of some 4100 linear feet. District boundaries on the east side of Main Street extend approximately one block east of Main Street.

Map of District Boundaries

District Governance

The DMSSD is governed by an elected board of commissioners. The board is comprised of seven regular members, one alternate and three ex officio members as follows: the Town of Manchester Director of Planning and Economic Development, a representative of the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and a representative from a church located in the District. Commissioners are elected every two years. Both property owners and business lessees within the District are eligible to vote for commissioners.

Your Commissioners

Plans & Projects

The Downtown Strategic Plan is a working document that is constantly reviewed and updated by the Board of Commissioners. The plan outlines prioritized efforts for addressing the five goals of the District as outlined above.

Strategic Plan

District Staff

Downtown Manager
The Downtown Manager is a part-time staff member that manages the day-to-day operations of the Downtown Manchester Special Services District on behalf of the Downtown Board of Commissioners and the District constituents.  The Downtown Manager's office is located in the WORK_SPACE building at 903 Main Street.

Parking Ambassadors
The District employs part-time Parking Ambassadors to monitor and enforce parking regulations. The Parking Ambassadors are commissioned constables who wear "Parking Authority" logos and enforce parking electronically via a mobile App. Feel free to ask them for assistance with the parking program!

Economic Development Specialist
The Town of Manchester's  Economic Development Specialist is employed by the Town of Manchester's Planning & Economic Development Department. The Specialist works to recruit and support businesses. 
Get Involved

The Downtown Board Meetings are open to the public and all constituents are encouraged to attend. Attending meetings is a great way to stay informed about what is happening Downtown and to let your voice be heard. The Commissioners welcome volunteers to serve on various committees such as the Parking &  Maintenance Committee, Marketing & Beautification Committee, and the Planning Committee. Property Owners and Business Lessees are also invited to run for election to the Board of Commissioners during the Biennial Election process. 

There are also opportunities to sponsor, support, and volunteer at downtown events.

For more information about any of these opportunities, contact the Downtown Manager.
Contact the Downtown Manager

Learn More