Alternative Camden - Ideas


(BID 3.0)


What is it?
A Business Improvement District (BID) is a geographical area in which the local businesses have voted to tax themselves to fund improvements. This same concept could be applied to residents to create a “Resident Improvement District” or combined with a BID to create a “Community Improvement District” for residents and businesses.

Why is it useful?
The BID model has proven to be effective at creating a shared vision for an area and funding its delivery. In an era of reduced council funding a “Resident Improvement District” would help people organise, ensure fair contributions, and deliver a shared vision for the community.

Existing Neighbourhood Forums could undergo the balloting process to ensure a steady funding stream, allowing them to take on dedicated staff and reduce their reliance on voluntary time contributions. “Community Improvement Districts” would allow businesses and residents to work together to achieve a joint vision for the area.

Who needs to be involved?
  • Central Government
  • Neighbourhood Forums
  • Business Improvement Districts
  • Camden Council
  • Camden residents
  • Local businesses

Where do we start?
  • Investigate previous process to achieving Property owner BIDS in 2014 and assess learnings.
  • Convene a workshop with Improvement District stakeholders and define desirable proposal for BID 3.0.
  • Work with policy experts, community representatives and local businesses to prototype governance and regulatory framework.
  • Formalise proposal and work with local and central Government to test.

Some thoughts…
  • Currently BIDs are based on business rates, so are paid for by occupying businesses. Duplicating this for residents would mean a council tax levy, but owners also benefit from the BID projects, could there be a way for them to contribute too?
  • Property owner BIDs cover commercial property owners, could this be extended to residential owners to capture the uplift created by a BID?