About the Program

Established in June 2001, the McDonough Main Street Program is part of a national network of more than 1,800 active Main Street entities. The program is an essential, community-driven initiative that focuses on conscientious revitalization of older, traditional business districts throughout the United States. The underlying premise of the Main Street concept is to encourage economic development, within the context of historic preservation, in ways that are appropriate for today’s marketplace. Main Street programs advocate a return to community self-reliance, local empowerment and the rebuilding of traditional commercial districts based on their unique assets—distinctive architecture, a pedestrian-friendly environment, personal service, local ownership, and a sense of community. The philosophy of the Main Street Program is to develop a comprehensive strategy that is tailored to meet local needs and opportunities. Work is encompassed in four areas:

  1. Design
  2. Economic Restructuring
  3. Promotion
  4. Organization

Committees, which encourage community involvement and work to catalyze actions in these impactful areas, are an important part of most Main Street Programs. The Main Street philosophy and the Eight Guiding Principles behind this methodology make the program an effective tool for community-based, grassroots revitalization efforts. These eight components ask Main Street Cities to take a comprehensive approach, move in incremental steps, promote self-help, create partnerships, strive to identify, and capitalize on existing assets, emphasize quality, be open to change and, most importantly, be committed to implementation.