Historic Lebanon has been designated as a 2020 Accredited Main Street America program. Accredited status is Main Street America’s top tier of recognition and signifies a demonstrated commitment to comprehensive commercial district revitalization and proven track record of successfully applying the Main Street Approach.
“We are proud to recognize this year’s 860 Nationally Accredited Main Street America programs that have dedicated themselves to strengthening their communities,” said Patrice Frey, president and CEO of the National Main Street Center. “These Accredited Main Street programs have proven to be powerful engines for revitalization by sparking impressive economic returns and preserving the character of their communities. During these challenging times, these Main Street programs will be key to bringing economic vitality back to commercial districts and improving quality of life during the recovery process.”
In 2019, $6.45 billion of public and private reinvestment was generated, 6,466 net new businesses were opened, 32,316 net new were jobs created, and 10,412 buildings were rehabilitated in Main Street America communities.
Historic Lebanon’s performance is evaluated by the Tennessee Main Street Program, under the state Department of Economic and Community Development, which works in partnership with Main Street America to identify the local programs that meet 10 rigorous 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.
In 2019, $3,378,000 of private and public money was invested in the Lebanon Main Street District. This resulted in 13 historic building rehabilitation projects, the renovation of the public parking lot on the square, a new public art “Lebanon” mural, and several new businesses that created jobs.
“This continued investment in our historic downtown core adds to the economy for the entire community,” said Kim Parks, Historic Lebanon executive director. “Our program is all about using historic preservation for positive economic impact.”
Tom Hines, chairman of the nonprofit’s board of directors, said, “Historic Lebanon is proud of our national accreditation and we will continue on with our mission of revitalizing Lebanon’s Public Square and surrounding neighborhoods.”
Submitted to the Democrat