Richmond – The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development announced today the Virginia Main Street Merit Award winners at the awards luncheon in Staunton, Virginia. The awards were given in five merit areas celebrating excellence in different areas of downtown revitalization efforts.
“Virginia Main Street organizations are helping to transform downtowns across Virginia and driving the new Virginia economy,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. “In the last five years, designated Main Street communities have sparked more than $159 million in private investment in their districts, and, as a result, there has been a net collective gain of 4,400 jobs across our Main Street downtown districts. I congratulate today’s award winners on their outstanding work and dedication to enhancing their local communities.”
In addition to the merit awards, Virginia Main Street (VMS) designated communities were recognized for milestone achievements including volunteer hours and private investment. Currently, the VMS program has 29 designated communities including: Abingdon, Altavista, Ashland, Bedford, Berryville, Blackstone, Bristol, Culpeper, Danville, Farmville, Franklin, Fredericksburg, Gloucester, Harrisonburg, Hopewell, Lexington, Luray, Lynchburg, Manassas, Marion, Martinsville, Orange, Saint Paul, South Boston, Staunton, Warrenton, Waynesboro, Winchester and Wytheville.
“It is an honor to recognize these great projects and people in our Main Street communities,” said Bill Shelton, director of the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. “The work the Main Streets organizations and volunteers are doing to revitalize their downtown districts is creating vibrant sustainable communities where people will work, live and play.”
Below is a list of award recipients:
Virginia Main Street Merit Awards
Best Downtown Public Improvement Project
City of Danville for Reimagining the River District
Best Downtown Retail Event
Gloucester Main Street Association for the Wine Walk
The Hub Coworking in Harrisonburg, Virginia
Outstanding Fundraising Effort
Luray Downtown Initiative Inc.
Volunteer of the Year
Herb Miller with Altavista On Track
Volunteerism Milestone Achievement Awards
50,000 Volunteer Hours
Bedford Main Street
25,000 Volunteer Hours
Orange Downtown Alliance Inc.
15,000 Volunteer Hours
Downtown Farmville Partnership St. Paul Main Street
5,000 Volunteer Hours
Ashland Main Street Association Fredericksburg Virginia Main Street Inc.
Private Investment Milestone Achievement Awards
$30 Million in Private Investment
Berryville Main Street and the town of Berryville
$10 Million in Private Investment
Fredericksburg Virginia Main Street Inc. and the city of Fredericksburg
$5 Million in Private Investment
Believe in Bristol and the city of Bristol
$1 Million in Private Investment
Ashland Main Street Association and the town of Ashland
The VMS program, managed by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), provides assistance and training to help communities increase the economic vitality of their downtown commercial districts. Virginia Main Street uses the National Main Street model to help communities revitalize their downtowns by focusing on their unique heritage and attributes. The program helps communities implement a comprehensive revitalization strategy that creates economic growth and pride in downtowns.
For more information about the Virginia Main Street program, visit www.dhcd.virginia.gov.