GAINESVILLE, Ga. (May 1, 2023) – Main Street Gainesville has been designated as an Accredited Main Street America™ program for meeting rigorous performance standards. Each year, Main Street America and its partners announce the list of Accredited programs to recognize their exceptional commitment to preservation-based economic development and community revitalization through the Main Street Approach™.
“We are very proud to acknowledge this year’s 862 Accredited Main Street America programs, and their steadfast dedication to nurture economically and culturally vibrant downtown districts,” said Interim President & CEO of Main Street America Hannah White. “The increase in the size and impact of our network speaks volumes to the power of the Main Street movement to respond to the needs of local communities and drive innovative solutions.”
In 2022, Main Street America programs generated $6.2 billion in local reinvestment, helped open 7,657 net new businesses, facilitated the creation of 29,174 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 10,688 historic buildings and leveraged 1,528,535 volunteer hours. On average, for every dollar that a Main Street program spent to support their operations, it generated $24.07 of new investment back into their downtown communities.
Collectively, 2 million people live or work within the boundaries of designated Main Street America districts. An estimated workforce of 1.1 million people contribute their skills and expertise to advancing the missions of these historic downtowns and commercial corridors.
Main Street Gainesville’s performance is annually evaluated by the Georgia Main Street Program, which works in partnership with Main Street America to identify the local programs that meet rigorous national performance standards. To qualify for Accreditation status, communities must meet a set of rigorous standards that include commitments to building grassroots revitalization programs, fostering strong public-private partnerships, nurturing economic opportunity for small businesses and entrepreneurs, and actively preserving historic places, spaces and cultural assets.
In 2022, Main Street Gainesville saw 25 new, expanded or relocated businesses that opened within the vibrant historic business district, which includes downtown, Midland and Historic Green Street areas of Gainesville. The program boasted 43 members who contributed to the Main Street Advisory Board, promotions and design committees. Additionally, 24 businesses joined in to sponsor downtown events, which have grown to hold thousands of locals and visitors alike for concerts and holiday celebrations throughout the year. Main Street Gainesville was able to give two facade grants and two event grants, further promoting beautification of historic buildings and community development downtown.
“It’s been incredible to see downtown Gainesville grow in the three-plus years I’ve been with the City,” said Main Street Manager Nicole Parham. “Working with downtown business leaders as well as other organizations such as Gainesville Parks and Recreation, the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce and other City departments to build up our downtown community has been such a joy. What many people don’t see is the community I get to work alongside within the Georgia Main Street Program. There’s a wonderful network of Main Street managers in cities throughout our state that have been a wonderful asset of ideas, inspiration and encouragement in my role as Main Street manager. Accreditation with Main Street America and the Georgia Main Street Program showcases the commitment our community has to being intentional with revitalization efforts downtown."
Downtown saw several public improvement projects completed this past year, including downtown streetscaping and the new Gainesville North Parking Deck, which have greatly improved walkability and downtown infrastructure. Parks and Recreation completed many new developments along the Midland Greenway, further enhancing the quality of life for the citizens of Gainesville.
ABOUT MAIN STREET GAINESVILLE
Main Street Gainesville is a division of the Gainesville Convention & Visitors Bureau focusing on economic activity in historic downtown Gainesville. Gainesville has been a designated Georgia Main Street City since September 1995, and a National Main Street Center member since 1997. Main Street Gainesville is sanctioned by Main Street America and Georgia Main Street, and implements the standard Four-Point Approach used by Main Street programs all over the country: economic vitality, design, promotion and organization. To learn more about Main Street Gainesville, click here.
ABOUT MAIN STREET AMERICA
Main Street America leads a movement committed to strengthening communities through preservation-based economic development in older and historic downtowns, and neighborhood commercial districts. For more than 40 years, Main Street America has provided a practical, adaptable and impactful framework for community-driven, comprehensive revitalization through the Main Street Approach™. Our network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development. Since 1980, communities participating in the program have generated more than $101.58 billion in new public and private investment, generated 168,693 net new businesses and 746,897 net new jobs, rehabilitated more than 325,119 buildings and levered over 33.7 million volunteer hours. Main Street America is a nonprofit subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. For more information, visit mainstreet.org.