Downtown Berkeley Association is hanging 85 colorful double banners from downtown Berkeley’s lampposts to launch a new branding campaign, “Meet Me Downtown.” The campaign is being led by the DBA with five partners, the new Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, the new UC Theatre, Berkeley Rep, Freight & Salvage and Visit Berkeley.
“This marks the beginning of the revitalization of the downtown that we’ve been building towards over the last few years,” said John Caner, CEO of the DBA. “The museum is the biggest thing that has happened downtown since the opening of BART, and the UC Theatre is a major venue. It’s the beginning of a fundamental shift.”
BAMPFA opens at the end of January and the refurbished UC Theatre plans to announce its first shows in January for a spring 2016 opening. Berkeley Rep’s revamped Thrust stage, renamed the Peet’s Theatre, opens on Jan. 9.
The campaign is gearing up just days after the Berkeley City Council gave approval for the construction of an 18-story, 302-unit apartment complex with ground floor retail and ten new movie theaters. The DBA was a strong proponent of the 2211 Harold Way building because it believed it would bring hundreds of new residents to the area, further revitalizing the downtown.
In addition to the banners, Meet Me Downtown will include online, bus and BART ads. The campaign will culminate in a Meet Me Downtown Day on Sunday, March 20, 2016, with cultural and entertainment programming throughout the day, and venues open for free or reduced admission.
Caner said the tagline had originally been devised by BAMPFA for its downtown move. But Caner said he told Director Lawrence Rinder, “That’s a terrific tagline, can we use it together?”
“We’re celebrating the arts and our public spaces,” Caner said. “It’s all about creating a welcoming, fun environment.”
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