BATON ROUGE, La. – Five Northwest Louisiana communities are among the 23 statewide designated as 2020 Accredited Main Street America programs, Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser announced Monday in a news release.
Accredited status is Main Street America’s top tier recognition demonstrating a commitment to comprehensive commercial district revitalization and proven track record of successfully implementing the Main Street Approach.
Locally recognized programs include:
- Main Street Homer
- Minden Main Street
- Natchitoches Main Street
- Ruston Main Street
- Springhill Main Street
“As we move down the road to recovery, programs like Main Street America and the Louisiana Main Street Network will be needed now more than ever. Our small business owners are the heartbeat of our Main Street communities. They give the community its sense of place and character and provide the uniqueness that sets one community apart from another,” Nungesser said in the release. “It’s an honor to be able to recognize these 23 Louisiana Main Street programs who are working diligently to revitalize their communities and remain Louisiana Strong.”
“We are proud to recognize this year’s 860 Nationally Accredited Main Street American programs that have dedicated themselves to strengthening their communities,” said Patrice Frey, president & CEO of the National Main Street Center. “These Accredited Main Street programs have proven to be powerful engines for revitalization by sparking impressive economic returns and preserving the character of their communities. During these challenging times, these Main Street programs will be key to bringing economic vitality back to commercial districts and improving quality of life during the recovery process.”
Nationally in 2019 alone, $6.45 billion of public and private reinvestment was generated; 6,466 net new businesses were opened; 32,316 net new were jobs created; and 10,412 buildings were rehabilitated in Main Street America communities.
Overall, Louisiana’s Main Street communities have seen:
- $956 million in total investment
- $460 million in private investment
- $496 million in new construction and rehabilitation
- 9,600-plus net new jobs
- 2,000-plus net new businesses
- 171,000-plus volunteers since 2004
Each local Louisiana Main Street organization’s performance is annually evaluated by Louisiana Main Street, which works in partnership with the National Main Street Center to identify the local programs that meet ten national performance standards.
Evaluation criteria determines the communities that are building comprehensive and sustainable revitalization efforts and include standards such as fostering strong public-private partnerships, documenting programmatic progress, and actively preserving historic buildings.