Marietta Main Street has been designated as an accredited Main Street America™ program for meeting rigorous performance standards set by the National Main Street Center. Each year, the National Main Street Center and its Coordinating Program partners announce the list of accredited Main Street America programs in recognition of their exemplary commitment to preservation-based economic development and community revitalization through the Main Street Approach.
“We are thrilled to honor this year’s 829 nationally accredited Main Street America programs for their commitment to preservation-based economic development and the revitalization of their commercial districts,” says Patrice Frey, President & CEO of the National Main Street Center. “The power of Main Street shines across the country through these vibrant communities, who have all worked to generate impressive economic returns, preserve community character, and celebrate local history.”
In 2017 alone, Main Street America programs generated $4.48 billion in local reinvestment, helped open 6,211 net new businesses, generated 30,294 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 8,737 historic buildings, and clocked 2.7 million volunteer hours.
The performance of Marietta Main Street is annually evaluated by Heritage Ohio, 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.
Marietta Main Street has poured a tremendous amount of resources into the revitalization of downtown. In 2017, over $100,000 was invested directly through volunteerism, with an additional $6,000 into façade improvement projects, $6,000 into public art initiatives, and $14,000 into downtown beautification. In total, Marietta Main Street directly invested nearly $130,000, which is more than their total operating budget.
“In 2013, the City of Marietta passed a resolution for our community to be known as an official Main Street Community and we carry the torch that ensures we maintain that accreditation year after year. We are proud to be connected to so many amazing local leaders across the country, who are responsible for the direct growth and vitality of their communities,” says Cristie Thomas, Executive Director of Marietta Main Street.
Main Street America has been helping revitalize older and historic commercial districts for more than 35 years. Today, it is a network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, who share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development. Since 1980, communities participating in the program have leveraged more than $74.73 billion in new public and private investment, generated 614,716 net new jobs and 138,303 net new businesses, and rehabilitated more than 276,790 buildings. Main Street America is a program of the nonprofit National Main Street Center, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.