We strive every day to catalyze a more beautiful, welcoming, playful, and prosperous downtown in the Spirit of San Antonio that amplifies our culture, heritage, and spirit.
Since 1982, Centro PID Management Corporation San Antonio (Centro for short) and its predecessors have served everyone who lives, works, plays and visits downtown San Antonio by being THE nonprofit dedicated to improving the quality of place in our urban core by managing the City’s downtown Public Improvement District (PID). The foundation of our work is our clean + safe program performed by 100+ friendly cleaning, landscaping, hospitality and Quality-of-Life Ambassadors. They are out there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We augment this with events & programming, marketing, small business support, public art, capital improvements, and advocacy for CIP changes that catalyze a more beautiful, welcoming, playful, and prosperous downtown.
In short, the PID was established by the City in 1999 at the request of a majority of commercial and condominium property owners within the PID. Centro was then contracted by the City to perform our services based on plans approved annually by our Board and City Council. 90% or more of our funding comes from voluntary assessments applied to all the commercial and condominium properties within the PID. This is supplemented by contracts, grants and contributions from the City and CPS which amount to less than 10% of our operating budget.
The PID has been renewed by downtown property owners periodically through a petitioning process. By law, the PID must be renewed by 9/30/23 or it will cease to exist. Renewing the PID for another 10-year cycle will enable us to continue providing the above-mentioned services and more to support our growing, evolving, historic neighborhood that is the heartbeat of San Antonio.
If you’re ready to sign, please click the “Sign Petition” button on the right of your screen.
The information below highlights our work over the last 10 years, in collaboration with property owners, local businesses, nonprofits, and governmental entities to bring to life the downtown we all envision and hope for. There are challenges to be sure, but with the support of our partners we are confident the next ten years will represent an even greater boom for downtown San Antonio.
We greatly appreciate your support and invite you to authorize the 2024-2033 PID term.
We are well on our way to renewing the Public Improvement District, ensuring Centro will be able to provide exemplary service for years to come. Thank you to all property owners who have submitted their petitions. If you have not yet done so, click the button on the side of the screen to sign your petition or set up a meeting with us.
Centro PID Management Corporation (CPM) is the nonprofit placemaking organization which strives every day to catalyze a more beautiful, playful, prosperous and welcoming downtown San Antonio that amplifies our culture, heritage and spirit. We are independent and not part of the city or county government.
We have deep roots downtown. Beginning as the Downtown Owner’s Association in 1982, our organization has been an advocate for property owners, business, and residents in the urban core for four decades. The Public Improvement District (PID) was established by the city at the request of private property owners in 1999 to offer supplemental clean, safe, and hospitality services within the PID. At that time, CPM was engaged by the City to manage and provide these and other services.
In 2013, the PID was renewed and expanded by property owners for a 10-year term.
Centro also manages two other nonprofits. The Centro Alliance can lobby on behalf of downtown, such as during bond cycles when we are seeking to have projects listed and funded for investment downtown. The Centro Partnership is our 501c3, which can take charitable contributions, administer grants and has contracts with various organizations to provide services such as cleaning the River Walk and special events. Whereas CPM is limited to working within the PID boundaries, these organizations work on behalf of the Downtown Regional Center and our close neighbors surrounding downtown.
All three nonprofits have the same Boards of Directors. From a governance standpoint, the Alliance is the parent organization, although each is managed independently of the others.
To learn more about Centro today, visit centrosa.org.
Get up to date on our current work and check out our Year-In-Review!
The Public Improvement District is a .8 square mile area in downtown San Antonio.
Approval of the creation of the district and its renewal requires the consent of property owners representing 50% of the combined value of all commercial and condominium properties and 50% of the acreage those properties represent within the PID.
Once the PID is established, all commercial property and condominium owners within this District pay an assessment based on their property value, which funds Centro’s services, including– but not limited to– clean + safe maintenance, landscaping, hospitality, small business support, advocacy, homeless outreach, marketing + events, and public art. The assessment percentages are as follows:
Commercial Property: Not to exceed $.15 per $100 of assessed value
Residential Property (Condominiums): Not to exceed $.09 per $100 of assessed value
As part of its agreement to manage the public improvement district to provide supplemental services, Centro presents a yearly Service & Assessment Plan and Budget for approval to its Board of Directors as well as San Antonio City Council.
The PID automatically sunsets on 9/30/23 after its current 10-year cycle. It must be renewed for services to continue.
Downtown By The Numbers
Downtown makes up only 0.3 percent of the city’s overall landmass but it is the 2nd largest regional center based on economic impact while also being the most historic neighborhood in San Antonio.
Source: U.S Census 2020, Placer.ai, City of San Antonio, Texas Comptroller, 2021
Downtown Is Everybody’s Neighborhood
Residents from all 10 City Council Districts invest time and money downtown. Check out the most frequent users of some of these downtown landmarks in 2021.
San Antonio Botanical Gardens
Travis Park Holiday Season
Downtown Owner’s Association founded
Centro San Antonio founded
Blocks maintained: 364
Zona Cultural Arts District receives state designation
Advocacy leads to $200MM in Bond funding
Partner with Rotary Club to launch Ice Rink at Travis Park
Main Street Small Business Support Program begins
Advocacy helps develop and pass DHS Homeless Strategy
Quality of Life Ambassador Public Safety Program begins
Advocacy leads to Downtown Neighborhood staying entirely within D1
Clean + Safe
Since 1999, Centro has provided cleaning + hospitality services for the district. As the organization and PID have grown, additional services have been added, increasing the beauty, cleanliness, safety, and prosperity of downtown.
Over the past ten years, the Ambassador team has grown from 54 to 85. Additional services including the Quality of Life Team, disinfecting high touch infrastructure, power washing pavement and bus stops, street vacuums, bird abatement, and landscaping have been added.
Our Ambassadors work 24/7 365 so that San Antonio has the cleanest downtown in the U.S. Our services include power-washing sidewalks and bus stops, sweeping and picking up waste, graffiti removal, bird abatement and trash collection. We also disinfect high-touch and high-traffic areas to promote health safety.
Starting in 2016, Centro partnered with SAPD to supplement existing Bike Patrol services by funding two officers for two additional hours in the morning to do initial sweeps of the district at the beginning of the day. Starting in 2021, the Quality of Life Team was put into action. These Ambassadors are trained in local ordinances to recognize and appropriately report on quality of life crimes. Serving as extra “eyes on the street”, they work to dissuade uncivil behaviors and report crimes to SAPD.
In 2016, Centro began a partnership with Haven for Hope to contract three outreach specialists to offer services to those experiencing homelessness in the PID. In 2021, Centro received a two-year ESG Grant to fund two in-house homeless outreach technicians and one homeless outreach clinician. Our partners over the years have included City of San Antonio Department of Human Services, Haven For Hope, Block By Block, Christian Assistance Ministries, SAMMinistries, and Corazon Ministries.
Going forward, we ensure that at least 3 full-time outreach specialists work in the PID by contracting with our partner, Corazon Ministries, who are the leaders in this type of work in SATX.
Roughly 40% of Centro’s Ambassador team are those who formerly experienced homelessness, a result of our partnership with Haven For Hope to create a workforce development pipeline that integrates unsheltered individuals back into society and provides for their independence and prosperity.
Centro manages over 1,000 hanging baskets and flowerpots (including planting 250 trees!) to bring color, shade and little islands of nature throughout downtown to attract beautiful butterflies and productive pollinators for all to enjoy.
Our Ambassadors are the friendly faces downtown helping visitors and locals by answering questions and finding just the right cultural experiences, hole-in-the-wall restaurant, cool rooftop bar, or any business, service or event they are looking for.
In 2020, Centro Ambassadors expanded cleaning services and implemented new disinfecting protocols to support property owners and businesses during the pandemic. We deployed state-of-the-art Motoscrubber storm disinfecting wands and increased power washing potency with virus-killing bleach tablets to clean sidewalks.
By year’s end, we had disinfected infrastructure more than 6.8 million times and power washed over 40 million square feet of pavement. Rigorous disinfecting measures are the new standard to help slow the spread of Coronavirus. Centro also coordinated a new homeless outreach hub with COSA DHS, SARAH, and other homeless service providers to address emergency needs within the unsheltered population during the pandemic and beyond. The hub provided facemasks, over 15,000 meals, and assisted with vaccine distribution. A trained clinician was added to the team to help address acute health concerns for the unsheltered population. Centro’s expanded clean, safe, and homeless outreach procedures have become our gold standard for maintaining a healthy and prosperous downtown that is better equipped to weather the next public health crisis.
In 2023 and beyond, Centro will focus on our existing and essential clean + safe services. We will continue to deploy innovative techniques to ensure downtown infrastructure is clean and sanitized.
Our Quality of Life team will almost double from 9 to 20 in 2023. We will work closely with City and County partners and advocate for funding and resources to ensure that there is necessary law enforcement presence and coverage to ensure the safety of the neighborhood.
Our homeless outreach team was transitioned to Corazon Ministries in September 2022, one of our close partners. Corazon is well positioned to respond and adapt efficiently to the needs of the unsheltered community downtown.
We will continue to be active partner in the execution of current and future homeless strategies to eventually get chronic and veteran homelessness to functional zero.
Speaking up for our downtown stakeholders is one of our most important functions. We take our advocacy responsibility seriously and work every day to ensure City, County, and State leaders know where our stakeholders stand and how they can best address their challenges. From the 2017 and 2022 Bonds, pandemic relief funds and the City Council Redistricting, Centro has advocated for and secured economic, social, and cultural prosperity for downtown.
2017 + 2022 Bond Programs
Centro convened downtown stakeholders to identify priorities for the neighborhood and eventually secure $285 million in bond dollars for downtown, invested in infrastructure and projects with community-wide impact.
In addition to the 2022 Bond, we mobilized support for the allocation of additional funding for capital projects through the Midtown and Houston Street Tax Increment Reinvestment Zones (TIRZ). The Catalytic Committee’s first recommended and then approved projects allocated $17 million for Upper Broadway, $22 million for Dolorosa St., and $14 million for Flores St.
Centro advocated for small business grants, outreach dollars, and provided input on the $30.9 million in ARPA funds for small business. Through our advocacy as part of the Business Development (BDO) Alliance, we were able to secure $625,000 in outreach dollars, $5.25 million in placemaking grants, $17 million in COVID Impact Grants, and an easier application process for this round of grants than those of 2020. Centro has been advocating for construction relief in the form of improved communication, signage, parking solutions during closures, and grants if needed to support business in 2021 and 2022.
Centro led the effort to create this Texas Commission of the Arts designated cultural district in 2015. These 44 contiguous blocks on the west side of downtown and on the near west side of San Antonio are home to some of the city’s most treasured cultural assets, including Market Square, Main Plaza, and San Pedro Creek. With significant new public and private investment, and implementation of the Centro commissioned ‘Zona Cultural Design Guidelines,’ the vision is now becoming reality.
City Council Redistricting
During City Council redistricting in Summer 2022, we rallied neighbors and neighborhood businesses to preserve the continuity and community bonds of our downtown neighborhood through single member district representation. The proposed map would have resulted in not just the splitting of neighborhoods, but a population disparity between Districts 1 and 5. With a revised map- resulting from community feedback- population parity was reached while also adhering to the committee’s guiding criteria regarding neighborhood continuity and enriching assets, thereby serving neighborhoods best.
By The Numbers
Public Safety, Cleanliness, Housing, and Students are our top priorities for the years ahead as UTSA expands its downtown campus and Private Developers lean into residential. We will commit full force to work with our partners to create the cleanest and safest downtown for students and families living here.
This program launched close to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, a well-timed initiative which helped to not only support local artists during a challenging time but also added to our culture and streetscape when inspiring art was needed in a dark world. Art Everywhere has added dozens of large-scale and small-scale installations downtown, directly supporting San Antonio artists while making storefronts, offices, and apartment blocks more attractive to pedestrians.
By The Numbers
Centro, through a pilot activation and now two successful event series, has brought a small stretch of urban alley to life with entertainment, local vendors, and community interactions. The latest series empowered local makers, artists, and entrepreneurs to plan and execute their own dreams for the space, resulting in increased attendance, media impact, and dollars circulated through our local economy. Peacock Alley has achieved 26,000 attendees and $2.1 million in earned media.
There’s nothing like downtown during the holidays, especially with Centro’s mischievous merrymaking. Partnering with Rotary Club of San Antonio, Centro has helped bring an Ice Rink to Travis Park during the holiday season since 2019, to the delight of tens of thousands of skaters so far. Ours and our partners various holiday activations, snow flurries, and magical memories have delighted an additional 110,000 people and garnered $6.4 million in media coverage.
This newest activation space enlivens the Zona Cultural district on the West end of downtown. Together with local property owners, nonprofits, and Bexar County with the nearby San Pedro Creek Culture Park, “La Zona” has brought new art and life to the area.
By The Numbers
Connected to Resources
Centro will continue to connect artists and property owners to exponentially increase the amount of art in the public sphere. Our activations and partnerships will continue to bring locals and visitors alike into the urban core. Our Local Economic Development team is finalizing a 2030 Plan, which will outline a concrete set of actions, as well as substantive goals, for our small business ecosystem downtown.
Pid Budget Breakdown
PID Budget Breakdown for Fiscal Year 2023
A petition is distributed to all property owners in the existing PID and the proposed expansion areas. Property owners will be requested to sign the petition supporting the reauthorization. Upon receipt of the valid petition representing more than 50% of the property area, the petition will be presented to City Council and a public hearing will be held to take action on the reauthorization of the PID to include the proposed expansion areas. City Council will vote on the approval of the PID in Spring 2023.
No. The current rates, $.15 per $100 of assessed value for Commerical Properties and $.09 per $100 of assessed value for condominiums, will remain in place for the entire reauthorized term (through 2033).
Without reauthorization, the PID will automatically expire at the end of 2023, and ALL of Centro’s supplemental services, including clean + safe, advocacy, local economic assistance and placemaking, will cease.
The proposed term is for 10 years (2024-2033) with a comprehensive review in 5 years to determine if any changes are necessary.
The core services will be consistent from year to year, but an annual Service & Assessment Plan and Budget will be submitted to City Council that will detail any adjustments or additions to the core and other supplemental services.
All private commercial and residential (condominium) properties within the boundaries of the district pay the assessment. Government properties, property owned by Non-Profit entities, schools, churches, and hospitals are all exempt from the assessment.
The Word Around Town
The Centro Board and staff manage two additional nonprofits which align to the same purpose and mission but can invest in and advocate for the benefit of the entire downtown regional center and our immediate neighbors to the west, south, east and north.
The first is our Centro Partnership. Because it is a 501(c)(3), the Partnership can accept charitable contributions which have helped fund the Art Everywhere program, for example. The Partnership contracts for clean and safe services to COSA, SARA and various private customers. It also invests in a variety of initiatives to improve quality of life and advance Main Street economic development, such as our Security grant program for small businesses and our entrepreneurial Holidays On Houston St retail incubator open in the Savoy Building during the 2022 holidays. For more information, check out the Advocacy section above or visit centrosa.org.
The original Downtown Owner’s Association ultimately became the Centro Alliance, our third nonprofit and our parent organization. It is a 501(c)(6) organization which allows Centro to lobby on behalf of property owners. This ability has been essential to our successes in the last 2 bond cycles. Additionally, the Alliance provides networking, data access, special events and other benefits for our members. For more info, visit our Membership Page
Ready To Sign?
Please request your digital petition using the button below. Signing the petition constitutes your support, as a property owner, for the Reauthorization and Establishment of the Public Improvement District.
Questions or concerns? Call us directly at (210) 225-3862 or shoot us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.