Downtown West Monroe, commonly known as Antique Alley, is bustling with boutiques and antique shops. A wide variety of shops can be found offering everything from the latest fashions, investment antiques, original works of art, and fine gifts.
Located on the banks of the Ouachita River, the downtown core has thrived over the years as a result of a group of dedicated merchants, property owners, and community volunteers committed to preserving the historic character of West Monroe.
For information on the many downtown community events and projects, follow the Downtown West Monroe Facebook and Instagram pages. During the holidays, the area comes alive, hosting the Christmas on the River Festival and Christmas light show every year.
In 2019, a portion of Downtown West Monroe’s Cotton Port Historic District was named as a National Register Historic District by the National Park Service. This designation means property owners within the district are eligible for both federal and state historic building rehabilitation tax credits.
Main Street Program
The Cotton Port Historic District was designated as a Louisiana Main Street district in 2020 by Louisiana Main Street. The first Louisiana community to receive this designation since 2014, West Monroe was also the first city to successfully complete the series of Lagniappe Community benchmarks required to receive this designation. The Main Street program provides a roadmap to spur community-driven, comprehensive downtown revitalization and sustainability.
Downtown Streetscape Master Plan
In July 2019, the City of West Monroe received a $99,000 USDA Rural Business Development Grant to create a redevelopment streetscape master plan for the downtown Cotton Port Historic District. The purpose of the plan was to identify potential projects that positively impact economic development, population growth, and quality of life. The plan also identified possible funding sources.
This publicly driven plan was developed through input taken from public meetings, online surveys, and one-on-one meetings with small business owners and community leaders. A downtown master plan steering committee was also formed for the purpose of gathering feedback. The group represented possible stakeholders in the planning process. An online version of the plan is available at www.downtownwestmonroemasterplan.com
Alley Park is a new open-air public gathering space located on the corner of Trenton and Natchitoches Street. A variety of community events and activities are hosted in the Park including family-friendly events and concerts.