What is Indiana Main Street?
Indiana Main Street encourages community-driven revitalization of downtown areas in Indiana cities and towns. The people who make up the Main Street network are passionate advocates, dedicated volunteers, influential stakeholders, and community organizers who work every day to turn the tide in their communities - catalyzing reinvestment, creating jobs, and fostering pride of place.
Main Street-style transformation is a combination of art and science: communities first need to learn about the local economy, its primary drivers, and its regional context (the science), but they also need to convey that special sense of place through storytelling, preserving the older and historic structures that set it apart, broad and inclusive civic engagement, and marketing (the art). To support this powerful network, the National Main Street Center has a revitalization framework – the Main Street Approach - that helps communities leverage both the art and science of downtown revitalization to create a better quality of life for all.
The program provides technical assistance and educational opportunities to participating communities. Indiana Main Street is the state's coordinating program to the National Main Street Center.
Read the Indiana Code establishing Indiana Main Street.
Indiana Main Street Program Guide
The Indiana Main Street Program has recently published a program guide to assist communities that wish to form a Main Street organization and to provide guidance and best practices for established Main Streets. You can download the guide below:
2018 Community Exchanges
OCRA is sponsoring a series of Community Exchanges on various Fridays in 2018. The purpose of the Community Exchanges are to allow Indiana Main Street communities and others to network and learn from one another. The exchanges will give communities an opportunity to discuss local issues, possible solutions to various issues, and innovative tactics Main Street communities are employing to address the needs of their organization, community and downtown areas.
The following Indiana Main Street organizations will host an exchange in their communities:
- February 2: Auburn (DeKalb County)
- May 18: Francesville (Pulaski County)
- July 13: Hope (Bartholomew County)
- September 28: New Albany (Floyd County)
- November 16: Frankfort (Clinton County)
Attendees do not need to be members of a Main Street organization. Elected officials and other leaders are welcome. For more information or to register, please visit this website.
Indiana Main Street Four Point Approach
The Four Point Approach involves:
Organization involves creating a strong foundation for a sustainable revitalization effort, including cultivating partnerships, community involvement, and resources for the district.
Promotion positions the downtown or commercial district as the center of the community and hub of economic activity, while creating a positive image that showcases a community's unique characteristics.
Design supports a community's transformation by enhancing the physical and visual assets that se the commercial district apart.
Economic Vitality focuses on capital, incentives, and other economic and financial tools to assist new and existing businesses, catalyze property development, and create a supportive environment for entrepreneurs and innovators that drive local economies.