Downtown Master Plan & Waterfront Strategy

Center of Community Activity

The Downtown and Waterfront area is a major center of activity for the City as well as the greater region as a whole and one of Portsmouth’s most visible assets. This area also supports the greatest concentration of mixed uses in the City. Given its prominent place in our City - it is vital that we continue to focus on coordinated and sustained growth for the downtown and waterfront.

Downtown Master Plan

Over the course of the next twelve months, the City will work closely with Portsmouth’s citizens to develop a Downtown Master Plan (DMP) to guide the continued development of the downtown area as a vibrant, walkable, mixed-use urban center. The plan will be based on clear and established principles and values - and a shared vision that will guide future growth and development in the downtown and along the waterfront.

The downtown and waterfront area have been the subject of previous studies and initiatives in the past. However, these initiatives have been more narrowly focused and targeted towards specific sub-areas. The Downtown Master Plan will look at the downtown area as an integrated whole.

Included in Plan

The DMP will incorporate previous development strategies, planning studies, parking studies, historic preservation efforts, and other planning initiatives to date and integrate these into a cohesive and coordinated document with a focus on sustaining, promoting and building off recent development successes. The Plan will include an economic market analysis component linked to land use and provide clear, measurable goals, objectives and recommendations for implement. The Plan will also incorporate a fiscally sound methodology for evaluating projects and prioritizing city resources to carry out the plan.

Portsmouth is at a critical juncture in the development of its downtown and waterfront assets. This is a significant opportunity to help set in motion a synergy which will support further growth and quality development which in turn will increase its attractiveness as a regional destination. The Downtown Master Plan will help set in motion and guide the "next wave" of new investment that will take downtown and the waterfront to the next level as a vibrant, diversified and memorable urban destination.

Receive Plan Updates

If you would like to be updated as the new Downtown Master Plan and Waterfront Strategy is being developed please provide your fill out the Update Form. You may also provide comments in the Text Box provided. For any additional information or assistance, please contact the Department of Planning at 757-393-8836.