Iowa City Downtown District Introduces New Delivery Service for Retail
Downtown Shops Begin Offering Free Delivery 5-Days a Week
In a continued effort to support the businesses in Downtown Iowa City, the Iowa City Downtown District introduced a new delivery service to provide the community with another opportunity to shop local. The Downtown Delivers program started operations on September 7th and will continue until the end of the year, delivering on behalf of 33 downtown soft-goods retailers throughout the Iowa City area including Coralville, North Liberty, Solon, and Cedar Rapids.
The Downtown Delivers program was developed to make shopping at downtown Iowa City retailers as convenient and easy as possible for the rest of 2020. Retailers in downtown Iowa City began pivoting to offering more delivery, shipping, and curbside pickup options during the shutdown in March and April. “Many of our retailers were doing free local delivery on their own. When one retailer came to us to ask for help as they were trying to do shipping, online, delivery and open up their storefront, we knew that consolidating efforts would not only be more efficient but attract new customers to downtown”, said Director of Creative Services for the Iowa City Downtown District, Betsy Potter. “In the first week, we have delivered to around 50 homes, we expect the demand to really pick up as the holiday shopping season starts to take off at the beginning of October. We have a great system in our office that will allow us to make up to 300 deliveries a week if needed”.
The Downtown District staff will be doing all of the deliveries on behalf of the shops in a Downtown Delivers vehicle provided by Toyota of Iowa City. The program is a simple process, where the customers make a purchase at any of the participating businesses and select or requests free Downtown Delivery. The order will be sent to the ICDD staff and the delivery will be put on the list, packages are picked up from the stores and delivered within 1-2 days depending on the number of deliveries each week.
Both Toyota of Iowa City and MidWestOne Bank jumped on to support the local delivery program as a way of supporting downtown and its businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic challenges.
“MidWestOne Bank is excited to partner with the Iowa City Downtown District to continue supporting local businesses during this uncertain time. We love this fresh way to support shopping local and we can’t wait to see the delivery vehicle everywhere driving the streets,” said Jenny Olson from MidWestOne Bank.
Downtown shops participating in the Downtown Delivers program:
Ten Thousand Villages
Ewers Men’s Store
Om Gifts for Body & Soul
Prairie Kitchen Store
Prairie Lights Books
The Haunted Bookshop
Critical Hit Games
The Shop Iowa City
Willow & Stock
Bread Garden Market
Herteen and Stocker Jewelers
Sweets and Treats
Iowa Artisans Gallery