Florida Main Street Program
Economic development in the context of historic preservation
We would like to congratulate our Ocala Main Street Executive Director Diana Schwartz for being the first in our program to successfully complete the Main Street America Institute's Revitalization Professional program! Well done!!
What is Florida Main Street?
Florida Main Street is a technical assistance program administered by the Bureau of Historic Preservation, Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of State, for traditional historic commercial corridors.
The Bureau conducts statewide programs aimed at identifying, evaluating, and preserving Florida's historic resources. Main Street, with its emphasis on preservation, is an effective strategy in achieving these goals in Florida's historic retail districts.
What We Do
In the past, the word "downtown" brought to mind an image of a bustling center of commerce and activity. Too often today, the images are of vacant, deteriorating buildings. Now communities have discovered that with the help from Florida Main Street, Downtown can thrive again.
There are many reasons for a community to actively encourage the revitalization of the downtown. An economically healthy downtown:
- Builds a positive image for the community
- Creates job opportunities
- Saves tax dollars
- Preserves the community's historic resources
- Helps to control sprawl
Throughout Florida there is a growing interest in improving the appearance and economic stability of historic downtown business districts. In many communities, the downtown is in a serious state of decline. Effective solutions to the problems of deteriorating building stock, loss of business, and the waning economic strength of downtown are crucial to the survival of the city itself.
"They are the economic engine, the big stage, the community's living room.
Main Streets tell us about who we are, who we were, and how the past
has shaped us."
-National Main Street Center
"Revitalizing Main Streets"
Since 1985, the Bureau has offered manager training, consultant team visits, design and other technical assistance, as well as the benefit of experience gained by other Florida Main Street programs.
Florida Main Street is a self-help program. The Bureau of Historic Preservation supplies technical assistance, but the credit and responsibility for success rests with the many community leaders who offer their time, expertise, and enthusiasm to revitalizing downtown.
Florida Main Street is incremental. Using the Main Street Four Point Approach, community leaders work together to bring about many small but positive improvements downtown. Together, these improvements revitalize the downtown.
Ronni Wood, CMSM
Florida Main Street Coordinator
Katherina Paliwoda, MHP