Mississippi Main Street communities accredited

May 24, 2013

Economic Development

The Mississippi Main Street Association announces the following cities have been designated as accredited National Main Street Programs for meeting the commercial district revitalization performance standards set by the National Main Street Center®:

Aberdeen, Amory, Baldwyn, Batesville, Bay St. Louis/Waveland, Belhaven, Biloxi, Booneville, Canton, Carthage, Cleveland, Clinton, Columbia, Columbus, Corinth, Greenville, Greenwood, Gulfport, Hattiesburg, Hernando, Holly Springs, Houston, Indianola, Kosciusko, Laurel, McComb, Meridian, Moss Point, Natchez, New Albany, Ocean Springs, Olive Branch, Pascagoula, Pass Christian, Philadelphia, Picayune, Pontotoc, Port Gibson, Ripley, Senatobia, Starkville, Tunica, Tupelo, Vicksburg, Water Valley, West Point and Woodville.

428759_10150846106178066_2075709329_n“We congratulate this year’s nationally accredited Main Street programs for meeting our established performance standards,” says Valecia Crisafulli, acting director of the National Main Street Center. “Accredited Main Street programs are meeting the challenges of the downtown in the economy head on and are successfully using a focused, comprehensive revitalization strategy to keep their communities vibrant and sustainable.”

The Main Street organizations are evaluated annually by the Mississippi Main Street Association, which works in partnership with the National Main Street Center to identify the local programs that meet the 10 performance standards. These standards set the benchmarks for measuring an individual Main Street program’s application of the Main Street Four Point Approach® to commercial district revitalization.

Evaluation criteria determines the communities that are building comprehensive and sustainable revitalization efforts and include standards such as developing a mission, fostering strong public-private partnerships, securing an operating budget, tracking economic progress and preserving historic buildings.

“Receiving National Main Street accreditation is a prestigious designation and we congratulate each of these cities for this achievement,” said Bob Wilson, MMSA Executive Director. “Our Main Street programs in Mississippi play a strategic role in stimulating economic development in our state.”

In 2012, Mississippi Main Street cities generated 228 net new businesses, 53 business expansions to existing businesses, 1,248 net new jobs, 111 facade rehabilitations and 160 upper floor housing developments. More than 57,005 volunteer hours were recorded.

Accredited programs will be recognized on June 20 at the Main Street Annual Awards Luncheon at the Old Capitol Inn in Jackson.

Established by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 1980, the National Main Street Center helps communities of all sizes revitalize their older and historic commercial districts. Working in more than 2,200 downtowns and urban neighborhoods over the last 32 years, the Main Street program has leveraged more than $55.7 billion in new public and private investment.

Participating communities have created 473,535 net new jobs and 109,693 net new businesses, and rehabilitated more than 236,418 buildings, leveraging an average of $18 in new investment for every dollar spent on their Main Street district revitalization efforts.

Source: Mississippi Main Street Association

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About Stephen McDill

Stephen McDill joined the Mississippi Business Journal in 2008 after working in radio and television. He is a graduate of Belhaven University and has won awards for his writing and photojournalism from the Associated Press and Mississippi Press Association.

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