Richmond Main Street Receives 2017 National Main Street Accreditation, Celebrates Accomplishment by Celebrating Downtown

Richmond, CA — Richmond Main Street Initiative 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®.

This accreditation comes in the midst of the organization’s annual Celebrate Downtown campaign that brings community events to Richmond’s historic Main Street district. The Healthy Village Festival, which took place on Saturday, June 24, was very successful with record-breaking attendance and participation by community partners who hosted activities and provided health and wellness resources.

Next in the series are Music on the Main concerts scheduled for July 26 (Niecey Living Single & the Obamah$, Steven Green & The Lifeline) and August 23 (Andre Thierry, Caribbean Allstars). The Spirit & Soul Festival on September 16, with performances by 1st Ave (Prince) Revue band, Yates Brothers & Sisters, Rhonda Benin, and PUSH will close out the Celebrate Downtown series. In addition to live music, all events will feature food, beverage, and artisan vendors, information booths, youth stage and kids activities.

“It is a great honor to recognize this year’s 828 nationally Accredited Main Street America programs for their outstanding work to transform downtown and neighborhood commercial districts,” says Patrice Frey, President & CEO of the National Main Street Center. “Main Streets are the heart of our communities, and the work they do to create quality public spaces, catalyze local entrepreneurship, and support downtown housing is more important than ever. Across the county, Main Street America programs truly strengthen the economic, social, and cultural fabric of their entire communities.”

The organization’s performance is annually evaluated by California Main Street Alliance, which works in partnership with the National Main Street Center to identify the local programs that meet ten 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, securing an operating budget, tracking programmatic progress and actively preserving historic buildings.

2016 was an exciting year for Richmond Main Street Initiative and Downtown Richmond. RMSI continued providing vital community engagement, health and wellness, and maintenance programs, while also implementing the crucial economic development and placemaking projects outlined in our strategic plan. The organization welcomed new businesses to Downtown and formed new partnerships to ensure equitable and community-focused development. In the next 2 years, Macdonald Avenue will welcome important new housing, retail, and business development projects. Additionally, in 2016 RMSI celebrated 15 years of service to the community.

“The Main Street Approach is one of the most powerful economic revitalization tools in the nation. This accreditation holds a great deal of meaning for us because it gives an additional seal of approval to the work that we do and the ways in which we do it.” says Amanda Elliott, Executive Director.

Richmond Main Street Initiative is a community based non-profit dedicated to revitalizing historic downtown Richmond. RMSI partners with the City of Richmond, merchants, and residents to develop and improve downtown Richmond as a pedestrian-friendly urban village that offers products, services, arts and entertainment that reflect the community’s rich and diverse heritage. and

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 1,000 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 $71.35 billion in new public and private investment, generated 583,869 net new jobs and 131,974 net new businesses, and rehabilitated more than 267,800 buildings. Main Street America is a program of the nonprofit National Main Street Center, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

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