The mission of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), as established

by Public Act 197 of 1975 is:

  • to correct and prevent deterioration in the established DDA district;
  • to encourage historic preservation;
  • to acquire and dispose of interests in real and personal property;
  • to create and implement development plans in the district;
  • and to promote the economic growth of the district.



What are the DDA Boundaries?





The primary goal of the Alpena DDA is to implement positive economic, physical, and aesthetic changes in downtown Alpena. The Alpena Downtown Development Authority was established in 1980, enabled by Michigan Public Act 197 of 1975, City of Alpena ordinance, and governed by the DDA BY-LAWS.

The DDA is guided by its Strategic Plan which was developed through many months of study and public input sessions Read the most recent Strategic Plan & Market Analysis, which was completed in 2017 by clicking here.


The DDA is governed by a Board of Directors, which is composed of individuals with downtown’s best interests in mind. 

– Mike Mahler, President & CEO of First Federal of Northern Michigan

– Matt Wojda, Attorney, White and Wojda

– Todd Britton, Meridian Contracting Services, LLC

– Chad Esch, Owner, Bannan Funeral Home

– Aaron Buza, Owner, Downtown Scoops

-Griffin James, The Local Basket Case

-Jeffrey Mindock, Thunder Bay Theatre

-Kyrie Momrik, AMC State Theatre

– Greg Sundin, Alpena City Manager

– Joanna Cooper, Fletcher Street Depot

– Shawn Straley, Owner, Masters- La Londe Shoes

– Anne Gentry, Executive Director

The DDA has five established committees, four of which are based on the National Main Street Program. 

The tasks and goals of the strategic plan will be implemented through the work of these committees,

who will then report to the DDA Board for final action.



Works to create a safe, physically sound, inviting atmosphere for shoppers, workers, and visitors. Attention to all of its physical elements: public and private buildings, storefronts, signs, public spaces, parking areas, street furniture, public art, landscaping, merchandising, and window displays. Design is also responsible for:

– Facade Grants ( Awarded in May and September)

– Hanging flower baskets throughout downtown

– Bike racks


Works to support positive economic development by strengthening the image and identity of downtown Alpena through facilitating, implementing, and promotion downtown events, activities, and programs. In the past, Promotions has been responsible for:

– Chowder Cook-off

– Printing downtown maps and kiosks

– Downtown Dollars


Works to strengthen downtown’s existing economic assets while diversifying its economic base. The goal is to build a commercial district that responds to the needs of today’s consumers.









The parking committee continues to review the downtown parking plan for all day and two hour parking and to create parking plans that respond to downtown’s needs.

Interested in getting involved?

Anyone is welcome to attend DDA committee meetings! Contact Director Anne Gentry at anneg@alpena.mi.us or call 989.356.6422 for more details.




The DDA is an authority of the City of Alpena, and works very closely with City Council

and City Staff as it establishes and implements its goals, including participating annually

in the City’s 5 year Capital Improvement Planning process.

The DDA works closely with the City of Alpena, Downtown Alpena Business

Association, 0Alpena Convention and Visitors Bureau, Alpena Area Chamber

of Commerce, Target Alpena Development Corporation and many other

groups throughout the community to support activities which help grow both

downtown and the community.



2017 Downtown Strategic 

Plan and Market Analysis