The Downtown Berkeley Association (DBA) is an independent nonprofit organization, funded by Downtown Property Owners and other sources, focused on creating a welcoming, vibrant and prosperous City Center.

Our Environment Enhancement Services include cleaning, hospitality, outreach, beautification by a team of Downtown Ambassadors.   Our Economic Enhancement Services include marketing, communications, event and business support.

The DBA is Owner’s Association for the Downtown Berkeley Property-Based Business Improvement District (PBID), (Link to PBID page) representing 187 property owners and approximately 680 of their merchant and business tenants.    The DBA was originally formed in 1989 as Main Street project with voluntary dues. In the 1990’s, the DBA became a Business Improvement District (BID) funded by a surcharge on all business licenses.   In 2012 the PBID replaced the BID to bring sufficient funding and focus on key strategic issues in the Downtown.

strategic-plan-coverDBA priorities for our 2015 Strategic Plan area as follows:

  1. Make downtown safer and more welcoming with an emphasis on reducing homelessness and disruptive street behaviors
  2. Improve cleaning in Downtown (particularly in light of recent drought)
  3. Fill vacant storefronts and support local businesses.
  4. Invest in place-making, defined as both capital improvements and programming, to create better public amenities and more walkable, bikeable streets;
  5. Improve the parking experience for residents, visitors and employees.
  6. Increased advocacy with City and other agencies and stakeholders


The Downtown Berkeley Association provides leadership to create and sustain a welcoming, vibrant, and prosperous city center.



Downtown will be a fun, dynamic and inclusive place that hums with activity. It will be a multi-dimensional destination, accommodating a variety of uses – a place to work, live, shop, be educated and entertained.


Downtown will be welcoming to all and provide safe and clean streets in a stable, predictable and hospitable environment.


Downtown will be a destination for creativity – a regional hub for arts and culture, and, in partnership with the University of California and other educational institutions, an internationally acclaimed center for innovation and entrepreneurship.


Downtown will be a place that embraces and exemplifies all three pillars of sustainability – environmental balance, particularly in a time of extreme drought; economic prosperity with a focus on local independent businesses; and social equity, creating a variety of opportunities through diverse housing, jobs and education.


Downtown will be a place where merchants, property owners, arts venues, and other businesses and nonprofits prosper with increased number of customers enjoying the downtown.