May 5, 2010 10:50:00 AM
Allen Baswell - [email protected]
Main Street Columbus has received an award from a national organization for its efforts in downtown beautification and building strategic partnerships.
In an announcement made Tuesday, the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced that Main Street Columbus is a winner of the 2010 Great American Main Street Awards, one of four winners nationally.
"So many have worked so hard to realize what a unique place and jewel Columbus is, so for us to finally be awarded this honor means others have taken notice on a national level," said Amber Murphree Brislin, director of Main Street Columbus. "This is an accomplishment for which we should all be proud."
The announcement was made at the National Main Street Conference in Oklahoma City, Okla.
Main Street Columbus "worked with the city to create a regulatory environment that supported a mixed-use downtown with popular upper-floor apartments," including "a harmonious combination of retail, dining, business services, and housing in a downtown that renovated nearly every building," according to the award.
Jan Miller, Central Regional District Director for Mississippi Main Street Association, said she was proud and thrilled for Main Street Columbus to receive such a distinguished award.
"We know we are special in Columbus, and it is so great to know that the nation knows," Miller said.
Bob Wilson, executive director of Mississippi Main Street Association, said this award for Main Street Columbus is one that is well deserved and has been a long time in coming.
"Columbus Main Street is Mississippi''s shining star, and we are so proud of their board of directors and staff. This is so good for Mississippi and Columbus," he said.
Columbus is one of five cities to receive the award. The other four winners include Fairmont, W.Va., Ferndale, Mich., Lee''s Summit, Mo., and Paducah, Ky.
The winners were selected by a national jury composed of former award winners, community development professionals, governmental agency representatives who are active in community economic development and historic preservation.
According to information from the National Trust of Historic Preservation. Great American Main Street Award winners show exemplary achievement in the process of strengthening their downtown and commercial districts based on several criteria. This includes active involvement of public and private sectors, broad-based community support for revitalization efforts, innovative solutions to significant problems, commitment to historic preservation, economic impact of the revitalization program and successful small business development.
Allen Baswell is a former staff reporter for The Dispatch