By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Mar 24, 2009 at 3:37 PM

In other sign of Downtown Milwaukee's continued growth, the International Downtown Association, an organization comprised of more than 650 cities and urban centers from around the world, is holding its annual conference in Milwaukee.

Founded in 1954, the International Downtown Association has members in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. According to its Web site, the organization is "world leader and champion for vital and livable urban centers. Through its network of committed individuals, its rich body of knowledge, and its unique capacity to nurture community-building partnerships, IDA is a guiding force in creating healthy and dynamic centers that anchor the well being of towns, cities and regions throughout the world."

The 55th Annual IDA conference will run Sept. 11-15. Events and sessions are being scheduled in locations all around Downtown, but the home base for the conference will be the Midwest Airlines Center.

Beth Nicols, executive director of Milwaukee Downtown (BID #21), is on the board of directors of the association and helped secure the international conference for Milwaukee.